Emerson hails late artist Giger

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ELP keyboardist Keith Emerson has paid tribute to HR Giger, who died on Tuesday.

The Swiss painter, sculptor and set designer died after he failed to recover from injuries sustained by falling down a flight of stairs. He was 74.

Keith Emerson has recalled how Giger, who created the artwork for ELP’s 1973 album Brain Salad Surgery, always seemed destined for greater acclaim.

He says: “Giger was an extraordinary character. His paintings always looked like photos. He used airbrushing to come up with art that looked like it was part of a movie image.

“I suppose that’s why he ended up going into movies – and he always wanted to have a wider audience to admire his work.”

The two Giger paintings used for Brain Salad Surgery went missing after an exhibition in Switzerland in 2005. The artist said he was most disappointed to have lost the interior image of a woman’s head because “it was a birthday present which I made for my girlfriend”.

Emerson says: “A reward of $10,000 was offered – but it’s never been recovered.”