Brain Salad Surgery: The H. R. Giger artwork that inspired ‘Alien’
10.17.2017
08:53 am
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One of the images from H.R. Giger’s ‘Necronomicon.’

H.R. Giger’s 1977 book Necronomicon showcased his chilling, futuristic images of a world beyond our own would become the basis and inspiration for director Ridley Scott’s 1979 film Alien.

Giger’s profile was raised in 1973 when his sci-fi art was showcased by prog-rockers Emerson Lake & Palmer on the elaborate cover of their 1973 album Brain Salad Surgery. Swiss publishing house Sphinx-Verlag would publish a German-language portfolio full of Giger’s work about the mythical “Necronomicon” in 1977, as well as a French edition that same year. As you may be aware, Giger’s Necronomicon was inspired by the make-believe textbook of magic nightmared up by H.P. Lovecraft which the author first referenced in his 1924 short story, The Hound. When it comes to Giger’s dangerous, dark, and often somewhat R-rated take on the evil grimoire, the author and artist put his own unique spin on the book, undeniably his most vital and influential piece of work. In 1985 Giger would put out another edition of the material, Necronomicon 2 expanded to include 184 more images of his terrifying biomechanical creations and grim futuristic visions. 

Tracking down a copy of Giger’s Necronomicon isn’t difficult as long as you’re not coveting an original which can run you a few thousand bucks, while reprints usually sell for $200-$250. I’ve posted some of Giger’s work from the Necronomicon below—most which are emphatically NSFW.
 

 

 
More Giger after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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10.17.2017
08:53 am
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‘Halloween’ history: A female ‘Michael Myers’ slasher mask exists & it’s as terrifying as it sounds
10.17.2017
07:48 am
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Behold the “She Mask” a female version of the “Michael Myers” slasher mask created by Don Post Studios.
 
My enthusiasm for all things horror knows no bounds. I honestly can’t get enough of the genre and still look forward to Halloween with the zeal of a kid armed with a grinning, giant plastic pumpkin overloaded with enough candy to bring on diabetes overnight. One of my annual Halloween traditions is to watch the first three Halloween films during October—and it never gets old. For me at least. So, here’s the thing—even though I’d say I know my horror, I had no idea that the famous mask donned by “Michael Myers” in the film was made from a life cast of actor William Shatner’s face during the filming of 1975’s The Devil’s Rain.

But before we get to that, let me give you a quick history lesson on Don Post Studios who made the original William Shatner mask that would later become the face of evil incarnate thanks to Carpenter’s vision of a killer with a “pale face” and “human features.” 

Known as the “Godfather of Halloween” Don Post founded Don Post Studios in 1938, the first company to create the rubber masks we all know and love today, including a line of masks based on the classic movie monsters of Universal Pictures such as Frankenstein’s monster and the Wolfman. In the 1970s DPS put out masks based on the characters from the television series Star Trek including one in the image of Captain Kirk and another of “Mr. Spock” as played by Leonard Nimoy. Though kids were digging dressing up like both actors, the sale of these rubber masks was dismal. This didn’t surprise the folks at Don Post Studios as they had originally wanted to put out a collection of masks based on the aliens and far-out monsters featured on Star Trek but were told by Paramount to stick with Kirk and Spock.

Both masks were sculpted by William Malone, a long time artist, sculptor, and mask maker who worked extensively with Don Post Studios. According to Malone (noted in the book Voices in the Dark: Interviews with Horror Writers, Directors and Actors), director John Carpenter once visited him while he was at work and made the suggestion that the Shatner/Kirk mask would be cooler if it was painted white—though Malone couldn’t understand why anyone, much less Carpenter, would be even remotely interested in such a mask. Of course, the release of Carpenter’s first Halloween film showcasing actor Tony Moran wearing the Shatner mask painted white in 1978 changed all that once the film gained popularity. Sadly for DPS, their licensing with Paramount for the Captain Kirk mask had expired and their backlog of masks were gone—making it impossible for them to cash in on the Michael Myers mask craze. They would later engage the services of sculptor Neil Surges to create a generic “Everyman” mask in 1986 which would become a huge seller for the company until they closed up shop in 2012.

So what about the “She Mask” version of Michael Myers? Well, that’s where this story takes a bit of a weird, left turn.

In 2001 Don Post Studios decided that a female version of their best-selling Michael Myers/“Everyman” mask should be a real thing. So they came up with the “She Mask” (which was also sometimes called the “Michelle Myers mask”) that came with long hair, pink lipstick, blue eyeshadow and a fierce eyebrow game. According to folklore about the mask, DPS only produced a small number of the deeply creepy monster mashup making it quite the covetable collector’s item. The mask did end up in a film in 2009 called The Poughkeepsie Tapes, but that’s all I’m going to say about that. I’ve posted a few pictures of the “Michelle Myers” mask below. If you need me, I most definitely won’t be hiding under the bed or in a closet.
 

The ultra-rare “She Mask” (also known as the “Michelle Myers mask” by Don Post Studios.
 

A still of the “She Mask” in action from the 2007 film ‘The Poughkeepsie Tapes.’
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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10.17.2017
07:48 am
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Nick Cave’s life & work come alive in a stunning new 328-page graphic novel ‘Nick Cave: Mercy on Me’
10.17.2017
07:48 am
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An illustration by Reinhard Kleist from his new graphic novel, ‘Nick Cave: Mercy on Me.’
 

“Floods, fire, and frogs leapt out of my throat,” he explained. “Though I had no notion of that then, God was talking not just to me but through me, and His breath stank. I was a conduit for a God that spoke in a language written in bile and puke. And for a while, that suited me fine.”

—Nick Cave ruminates on God during a broadcast by BBC Radio 3 Religious Services in 1996. Read/listen to it here.

From his origins growing up in Australia glued to The Johnny Cash Show, to his days with The Birthday Party and later The Bad Seeds—author and illustrator Reinhard Kleist has left no stone unturned when it comes to his exploration of Nick Cave’s life in his new graphic novel, Nick Cave: Mercy on Me.

Kleist uses his dark and striking illustrations to help bring out emotions such as dread, desperation, persistence, and revelation as they witness Cave’s life and long career, from his huge-hair and heroin days with The Birthday Party to his more polished yet still antagonistic times with The Bad Seeds. The book even incorporates things from 2014’s documentary, 20,000 Days On Earth. Like life in general, the book is often a grim ride—especially when it concerns Cave’s early days in and out of addiction clinics and his time in Berlin—which, according to Cave, was a moment in his life where he felt “quite lost.” There he met Christoph Dreher, founder of the post-rock band Die Haut whom Cave credits with “basically keeping him alive” for a few years (you can see a blistering performance by Cave with Die Haut back in 1992, which is depicted in Kleist’s book, here). If you’re wondering how the legendarily cantankerous Mr. Cave feels about Kleist’s book, here’s more on that directly from the man himself:

“Reinhard Kleist, master graphic novelist, and myth-maker has - yet again - blown apart the conventions of the graphic novel by concocting a terrifying conflation of Cave songs, biographical half-truths and complete fabulations and creating a complex, chilling and completely bizarre journey into Cave World. Closer to the truth than any biography, that’s for sure! But for the record, I never killed Elisa Day.”

Stop me if I’m wrong, but I do believe that Cave just gave Kleist two goth-thumbs up for his efforts. I agree with Cave’s assessment of Kleist’s work, and if you are at all of a fan of Nick Cave, I recommend picking this book up right away. An English version of the graphic novel (which was initially published in German), can be found here. In case there is still any doubt that you need this book, I’ve posted a large collection of Kleist’s starkly beautiful illustrations from Nick Cave: Mercy on Me, below.
 

An illustration from ‘Nick Cave: Mercy on Me,’ Reinhard Kleist.
 

 

 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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10.17.2017
07:48 am
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Aurora: Time-traveling Nazis & extradimensional cryptids in shocking tale of the weird wild west…
10.17.2017
06:33 am
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Poster by Dave McKean
 
When you say “the first UFO crash in American history” most people think of Roswell, but the honor actually goes to Aurora, Texas. In 1897.  I was excited to hear that my art dealer/book publisher friend Thomas Negovan entered the world of movie-making—he’s a man of extraordinarily great taste and an expert in Symbolist art (among many other things)—took the 19th century newspaper reports and wrapped them in a mind-bending tale of time-traveling Nazis and extradimensional cryptids in the weird wild west. It was even shot in an actual ghost town.

His film debut pays homage to science fiction and horror films of the 1950s and harnesses a lot of artistic talent: the release poster was designed by graphic novel legend Dave McKean (The Sandman, Arkham Asylum), the Nazi space suit designs are by fantasy painter Brom, with the creature concepts done by famed painter Gail Potocki. The soundtrack featuring thereminist Armen Ra and ex-Dresden Dolls and Nine Inch Nails drummer Brian Viglione will be released on glow-in-the-dark vinyl). The creature was appropriately voiced by none other than the very extradimensional Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, creating an alien language utilizing the William Burroughs/Brion Gysin cut-up technique. 
 

Creature designed by Gail Potocki.
 
The project features great art direction and a unique vision. It comes off as if Jodorowsky had directed an episode of The Twilight Zone.
 

Nazi space suit designs by Brom
 
Head to aurorafilm.info to watch the movie trailer and sign up for updates.
 

 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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10.17.2017
06:33 am
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