H.R. Giger | Oscar-winning artist, 74
Swiss artist H.R. Giger, 74, who designed the creature in Ridley Scott's sci-fi horror classic Alien, died Monday at a Zurich hospital of injuries suffered in a fall.
Mr. Giger's works, often showing macabre scenes of humans and machines fused into hellish hybrids, influenced a generation of movie directors and inspired an enduring fashion for "biomechanical" tattoos.
"My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy," he said in a 1979 interview with Starlog magazine. "If they like my work, they are creative ... or they are crazy."
Early in his career, his unconventional obsession with death and sex found little appreciation in 1960s rural Switzerland. The host of an early exhibition was reportedly forced to wipe the spit of disgusted neighbors off the gallery windows every morning.
Mr. Giger, whose work also appeared on rock album covers, went on to work as a set designer for Hollywood, contributing to Species, Poltergeist II, Dune, and most famously Alien, for which he received a 1979 Oscar for special effects.
Frequently frustrated by the Hollywood production process, Mr. Giger eventually disowned much of the work that was attributed to him on screen. - AP