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HR Giger is best known as the foremost artist of Fantastic Realism.

He was born in a small town on the


outskirts of Germany in February, 1940. Giger grew up in a normal, middle class family environment. His
father was the local pharmacist. When he was quite young his father received a human skull as a
professional promotion from a pharmaceutical firm, and the Giger was immediately spellbound from the
moment he layed his eyes on it.
He soon developed a fascination with all things dark and strange, and later found inspiration from the
works of Salvador Dali and Jean Cocteau. After high school Giger went on to study architecture and
industrial design at Zurich's School of Applied Arts. He soon expanded his network of friends to include
those in involved in various aspects of the arts, and began drawing creatively with oils in his free time.
In 1966 Giger began work as an interior designer, and at the same time, completed some early paintings
which included Birth Machine, The Blinds, Kleiner Kopf, and Nach den 120 Tagen von Sodom. His first
paintings were mostly done with oils, or ink drawings. In 1968 Giger began working exclusively as an
artist, as well as filmmaker. In 1969, his first posters were published, and had his first solo exhibitions
outside of Zurich.
In the next decade, Giger began using the airbrush. These new works took on a unique otherworldly
quality. His most well known works of this period were called "The Biomechanical Dreamscape paintings"
and included many series of paintings such as "The Spell" and the "Passage Temple." These works were
said to be the conerstone of his fame, and are some of his most famous pieces of art. He grew to be
considered the leading airbrush artist in the world and was the first to prove that fine art could be produced
using the object. These new paintings were meticulous to the last detail, and possessed erotic mystery, as
well as alien elegance.
In 1973, the rock group, Emerson, Lake, and Palmer asked Giger to design art cover for their new album,
"Brain Salad Surgery." The art on the cd was voted among 100 best in music history in a recent survey.
In the early 80s, the artist went as far as creating a total environment. His first, the Tokyo Giger Bar, is a
cavernous, skeletal structure covered by double arches of vertebrae that crisscross the vaulted ceiling of an
ancient castle.
Giger's third and most famous book, "Necronomicon," was the visual inspiration for director Ridley Scott's
movie, "Alien." In 1978, the director asked Giger to design the alien creatures in the movie, as well as the
sets for their science fiction environment. His work on the film won him an academy award in 1980 for the
Best Achievement in Visual Effects.
In The mid 1990s, Giger began to work on his first museum, titled "The HR Giger Museum. The museum
is located in a medieval castle in Gruyere, Switzerland, and is being continually expanded still today. The
museum is home to many of his own paintings, and sculptures, as well as his own personal collection of art
from around the world.
As of today, more than 20 books have been published with pages full of his art. Now, Giger lives in Zurich
with his wife, Carmen Scheifele, creating new sculptures, planning upcoming exhibitions, and working on
a variety of, yet to be announced projects, including design sketches for a new European film.

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