H.R. Giger Dies: Award-Winning Artist Behind 'Alien' Creature Was 74

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 12:57 PM

By Ken Mandel

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H.R. Giger, the Swiss artist who designed the creature and groundbreaking sets for the classic sci-fi movie "Alien," died Monday from injuries sustained in a fall, a representative for his museum told multiple media outlets. He was 74.

Sandra Mivelaz, the administrator of the H.R. Giger museum in Gruyeres, Switzerland, told The Associated Press that Giger passed away Monday in a hospital.

Giger is best known for creating the extraterrestrial monsters in Ridley Scott's 1979 horror film "Alien," for which he won a 1980 Academy Award for Best Achievement in Visual Effects. His works often depicted nightmarish combinations of humans and machines that he described as "biomechanical."

His depiction of a human skull fused in a machine appeared on the cover of rock band Emerson, Lake, and Palmer's 1973 album, "Brain Salad Surgery."

He also designed the cover for Debbie Harry's solo album, "Koo Koo," in 1981.

"My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy," Giger said in a 1979 interview with Starlog magazine, according to Reuters. "A good many people think as I do. If they like my work they are creative . . . or they are crazy."

In addition to "Alien," Giger also contributed to the Hollywood movies "Species," "Poltergeist II," and "Dune."

In 1998, Giger bought the Chateau St. Germain in Gruyeres and opened the H.R. Giger Museum.

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