H. R. Giger
“That's a penis, so's that, THAT'S definitely a penis, that's a penis with legs, that's a penis with a penis, that's a penis coming out of a goat's head, that's a goat coming out of a penis's head, that's a baby MADE of penises...”
Hans Rudolf "Ruedi" Giger (born February 5, 1940) is a frustrated Swiss architect-become-celebrated-pornographer-artist, complete with hyphens. Unable to draw straight lines that define well-planned, intentional, and purposeful schematic diagrams of buildings and other enclosed spaces because of his inner demons' need to feed, Giger has sought to exorcise these fears and obsessions by giving them shape and substance through his paintings and sculptures. In the process, he has transformed the concept of the human-as-monster that an earlier artist (inasmuch as a writer can be considered to be an artist anymore in the Digital Age), Mary Shelley.
He called his creation a Necronomicon, but Hollywood, in stealing it for use in the science-fiction thriller Alien, calls it a xenomorph, meaning "strange form," in honor of Xena the Warrior Princess, who was portrayed by the strange form of actress Lucy Lawless, a political anarchist who is "built," as Giger says, "like a man with a woman's tits and ass." Like another adrogynous warrior, Grace Jones, Giger finds Lawless' hermaphroditic form "strange and, strangely enough, appealing." It is a shape worthy of celebration through art, he says, and he may execute some "biomechanical art" depicting her "in the embrace of an aroused machine," the Orgasmatron.
"Nightmare Art"[edit | edit source]
Giger bases many of his works of art on the nightmares he enjoys during his frequent night terrors, claiming the depiction of sadomasochistic sex and torture to be therapeutic for him, and, he admits, "fun." He blames Salvador Dali and Timothy Leary for inspiring him "through various masturbatory yoga techniques and forced sessions of listening to music by the Doors" to commit the artistic atrocities that he sometimes calls paintings, sometimes calls sculptures, "depending on the mood." His art seems to be inspired by a colorblind person having a bad acid trip.
Penis Landscape[edit | edit source]
One of his more controversial works is Penis Landscape, which shows dozens of erect penises penetrating vaginas, only one of which organs is wearing a condom. "People do not like the depiction of bareback sex," the artist laments, "especially where the anus is concerned." The punk rock band Dead Kennedys included it with their album Frankenchrist as a poster.
Other Venues[edit | edit source]
Disillusioned with "Hollywood plagiarists," as he refers to Tinsel Town's filmmakers, Giger turned his hand to designing furniture. However, one of his designs, which he called the Harkonnen Capo Chair "because polysyllabic words like 'Harkonnen' and 'polysyllabic' sound cool--maybe I should have called it the 'Polysyllabic Harkonnen Capo Chair'"--was stolen by the makers of the absolutely horrible sci-fi flick Dune, in which it appeared as the character known as the Dune Messiah. Next, he applied his bizarre artistic vision to interior design, creating the concept of Giger Gay Bars, where gay, lesbian, and transgender people can "get high, get pierced or tattooed, and get laid" among his "homo art pieces."
Controversy[edit | edit source]
Some people, Giger contends, are "afraid" of his art because they maintain "vanilla" ideas about human sexuality and "pretend to be squeamish about torture." However, it is just such men, women, and children, he says, that he seeks to "afflict" with his art. "They are too inhibited," Giger contends, "and need to loosen their bowels by opening their minds. The brain can be anal retentive, full of thoughts, reasons, logic, and other fecal matter. My art is like a laxative; it is like an enema; it can free their minds and their souls and make them whole again."