HR Giger

HR Giger

The Oeuvre Before Alien 1961–1976

The multifaceted, always surprising early work of Swiss artist and designer HR Giger


  • March 2023   approx. CHF 49.00 | eur 48.00


Title Information

Edited by Beat Stutzer. With contributions by Carlos Arenas, Fritz Billeter, Kathleen Bühler, and Beat Stutzer

2nd edition

, 2023


approx. 168 pages, 106 colour and 28 b/w illustrations

20 x 26.5 cm

ISBN 978-3-03942-136-7


HR Giger (1940–2014) remains one of the outstanding figures in Swiss art and design history. He achieved international fame in 1979 for designing the fantastic creatures and eerie environments that terrified moviegoers in Ridley Scott’s science fiction film Alien. Yet, before these iconic creations made him a celebrity and won him an Academy Award for visual effects, Giger was already highly regarded in the international art world of the 1960s and 1970s, for taking one of the most independent positions in the succession of Surrealism.

First published in 2007, this only book to date on HR Giger’s early work features a comprehensive collection of his drawings, early airbrush paintings, and designs for oppressive environments. It examines Giger’s art from its origins and places it in an art history of horror. Most of the works shown in this volume are only rarely on public display. Here they are presented in dialogue with works by distinguished precursors such as Giovanni Battista Piranesi, Francisco de Goya, Henry Fuseli, Max Klinger, and James Ensor.


Beat Stutzer is a Lucerne-based art historian, writer, and curator. He served as director of the Bündner Kunstmuseum Chur from 1982–2011 and as curator of the Segantini Museum in St. Moritz from 1998–2016.

Authors & Editors

Carlos Arenas

Fritz Billeter

Kathleen Bühler

, born 1968, is curator of contemporary art at the Museum of Fine Art Bern.

Beat Stutzer

, born 1950, read art history, history, and ethnology at University of Basel. He was director of Bündner Kunstmuseum Chur 1982–2011 and has been curator of the Segantini Museum in St. Moritz since 1998. He has curated many exhibitions and published widely on 19th and 20th century art.