Word arrived early this morning from several European sources including Swiss Public Television that renowned Swiss artist H.R. Giger passed away yesterday (May 12) following serious injuries sustained after falling down stairs. He was 74. Born Hans Rudolf Giger the influential fantasy realism artist (surrealist painter, sculptor, and set designer) is best known to most for being part of the special effects team that won an Academy Award for effects and design work on Ridley Scott's film Alien. He also worked on the special effects artwork for such other movies as Aliens, Alien 3, Alien: Resurrection, Species, Dune, Batman Forever, and Poltergeist 2.
H.R. Giger is also known for doing the cover artwork for numerous albums over the years including Emerson, Lake & Palmer's 1973 release Brain Salad Surgery (pictured left), Danzig's 1992 release Danzig III: How the Gods Kill, and the Dead Kennedys' 1985 LP Frankenchrist for which he did the highly controversial "Penis Landscape" poster insert in the original record sleeve. That controversial poster, which was a painting of rows of penises and vulvae, almost bankrupted Alternative Tentacles at the time after its owner and DKs lead man Jello Biafra was brought to trial over indecency charges brought by the then burgeoning PMRC (Parents Music Resource Center). Much of Giger's fantastic realism and surrealism work was of so-called "biomechanoids" as seen in photo with him below. Currently on exhibit through June 13th the Galerie SansvoiX in Leipzig (DE) is Giger's "Zeitgeist" that includes the piece in photo at top of page. More info.