HR Giger's Mordor series

leading from
H R Giger's Art
JRR Tolkien

Still collating
a) The name"Mordor"
The Mordor Series. Giger named this series of paintings after a dark hellish land featured in the fantasy novel, Lord Of The Rings simply because he liked the name.

I have only managed to take a look at a few of these in any sort of depths.

However some of them seem to have relating imagery as if one idea started in one painting and then was carried transformed into another painting and transformed again in another painting.

My general impression about this is to imagine the whole thing as if they were transformations through a period of time, a theme would appear in one image and then be repeated in another image but slightly transformed and then in another image transformed again, so one could map out the various changes.

Then I noticed that there are twelve paintings which is an interesting number in terms of horology, with twelve hours on a clock, twelve months of a year, although these were not painted all within the same year.  Meanwhile VIII to XI of the series are still to be publicly seen.

b)  The Mordor paintings

b. i ) Mordor I 
"Male member, elongated limbs and corpse crucifixion pose in dark cutaway space. Other forms yet to be worked out."

See: HR Giger's Mordor I (1975)

Mordor I (1975) by HR Giger (work 277)
Image source:

b. ii ) Mordor II
" Hans Bellmer doll merged with the cover of the scifi novel collection "The Inner Landscape", and statuette of a seated Cthulhu held in hands with head transformed into a human male member. "

See: HR Giger's Mordor II (1975)

Mordor II (1975)
b. iii) Mordor III (work 279) 
Spectre of  Lovecraft's or Beardsley's  face.  

See: Mordor III (work 279)
Mordor III

b. iv) Mordor IV (work 280) (1975)  

"Enigma of William Tell transforms into a spectre of the lead singer of Jethro Tull playing an aqualung while merged with the Excessive Machine being played by Durand Durand from Barbarella against the atrophied remains of the world of Conan The Barbarian, Man-Ape that's neither a Manitou, a Manatee or Manta Ray, but a sea lion with sting ray gills and mouth."

See: Mordor IV (work 280) (1975)  

Mordor IV
b. v) Mordor V (1975) (work 280

"The amphibious Nommo from the Sirius star system has journeyed to the Earth and as a member of the amphibious Telchines who lived on the island of Rhodes, has brought marvelous technology, the clock house and is itself integrated into the mechanism. A flipper like the wing of a dock on the clock house, a head like a catfish disguised as a Japanese dumpling. The clock house bell grows into the phallic tip of a hanging black string wrapped sausage. The clock hand becomes the tentacle of a squid.

Enter the gate of the clock house. Here remain parts of the body of the Greek mythological hero Perseus who slew the sea serpent with the head of the gorgon. He in turn has transformed into a mermaid's purse with its contents transforming into skin wrapped meat products. The body of the sea serpent, by way of a clock house that also transforms into a sausage stuffing machine, with a handle merged with the clock hand transforming into a squid. His foot transformed into the nasal cavity of a skull and his toes become the teeth later transformed into the wooden planks on the clock house's picket gate. 

Shark egg yolk turning  into the face of another Siriun Nommo transforming into the Andromedan buttocks faced puffer fish haggis beast, sleeping as a moon hopper, swinging like a pendulum, blowing like the north wind. "  

See: Mordor V (1975) (work 280

Mordor V

b. vi) Mordor VI  (work 282) 

"Interlinking structure of Gleeson's The Nerve Garden,  clockhand tentacle wraps its tentacle around the throat of the Nommo Manifestation as a Sea Monk transformed into a woman's dress and sea bishop turning into Kubin's The Brood who penetrates the woman's behind with a black sausage inspired by ancient Egyptian depictions of a cobra doubling as a pneumatic tube capsule."

See: Mordor VI  (work 282) 
Mordor VI

b. vii) Mordor VII (work 283). 
This takes an illustration of The Golem by Hugo Steiner-Prag for the novel by Gustave Meyrink, and transforms, and perhaps it looks as if the painting has tiger prawn like forms. The buttocks have transformed into the bottle like bulging form in the lower right with the sausage like thing entering the opening. The row of teet cups have moved to the middle left. The figure that seems to be curving forwards with its head down with the buttocks on display from Mordor VI with the face in the back with the long tongue coming out has been turned around and transformed into a figure inspired by an illustration by Steiner-Prag for Meyrink's The Golem.. The bishop has its hands on a testicular formation, and here this larger bulging form replaces that with a large hand touching it.

Another element to recognise about this is its similarity to James Gleeson's painting The Sower from 1947 which appears very interestingly Dali inspired. A giant has a skull superimposed over one of his eyes and this transforms into the dark skull imbedded in the head in Giger's painting. A root vegetable like plant with a blue tail held in the hand becomes the testicular sack at the right bottom corner. The mouth of the top left leonine creature with a blue main becomes incorporated into a phantom suggestion of a creature in the top right of the painting. An instrument with a curved edge leading to perhaps a spike at the bottom of the curve, hanging from the green material connected to the small skull superimposed over the giants eye, becomes an arm in the lower left middle of Giger's painting  that has a shoulder, but no seen hands, however it has an eye in its armpit and the wrist may well fuse with the hand at the bottom centre of Giger's painting. In the upper centre of Gleeson's painting another animal head with protruding eyebrows and large upper front fants has a knot in the hair from the top of the head. The upper part of its muzzle becomes transformed into the mouth of the head of Giger's humanoid, with a front fang twisted horizontally protruding forwards. The eye on the lower side of the animal's face has been carried over into Giger's painting. A sinewy hand in the centre of The Sower becomes transformed into piano hammers and wires.

See: Mordor VII (work 283).  
Mordor VII

b. xii) Mordor XII (work 296) 1976
Perhaps someone has the flu and is using a steamer that's transforming into a unicycle and a thermometre is transformed into a worm. If we could see Mordor VIII to XI, we might have some ideas about where this painting was coming from although we can see remains of the teet cups for milking idea in the lower bottom left, and the beaked head from Mordor VI at the top has been carried over into XII.

See: Mordor XII (work 296) 1976

Mordor XII

c) Relationships between imagery of the paintings

c.i) Fisher Price Music Box Teaching Clock
On 12th August 2016, I started looking at further Fisher Price toys that might have inspired HR Giger, and suddenly came by the Fisher Price Music Box Teaching Clock for children which I would have known well myself as a brilliantly designed compact item. It has a moon and a sun face on it, as well as a pendulum image. Of course in somewhere like Switzerland there would be plenty of clocks to be found, but something such as the Fisher Price toy would have been referenced in the works Mordor IV onwards. At present, amongst the Mordor series, I have only explored its connection with Mordor IV and Mordor V 

c. ii) Transforming buttocks shaped form
Numbers IV, V and VI show relationship through ideas, a vague face with goggle ideas in IV, transforms into a horned head with a buttocks face in V and then the buttocks appear in VI as lower part of a woman's body being penetrated from behind (and here it interelates with a heart shape space from a Dali painting), and above a face on the back of a woman's dress with horns. They also had a black pudding like thing common to the three with string tied around it sliding into anuses and other orifices etcetera. 

d. iii) Merpeople
Meanwhile IV and VI might contain suggestions of sea lion like bodies. Perhaps Giger intended to have a sort of a mermaid in IV and showed a suggestion of a mermaid's purse in V while the two other entities in this painting both bear signs of being like amphibious creatures of myth, the sea-monk and sea bishop. Sea bishops that are such things as dried up stingrays adorned Giger's walls at home.

d. iv) Squid like form
However V contains a suggestion of a squid form going across the upper part with its tentacles to the left and VI has a squid like form in a same place with its tentacle wrapped around the throat of the main face in the painting that may well be the transformed clock hand

d. v) Black pudding wrapped in string
Then it seems that I and III, feature a cutaway dark space on the right which features a long figure inside space. In V there is a central orifice from which a black pudding sausage is sliding out from and in VI, there is a similar orifice as a mouth with a hanging tentacle for the main face. Perhaps inspired by the Egyptian hieroglyph imagery representing Cobras.

d. vi) Human in a cutout space
Meanwhile Mordor I contains a humanoid in a dark cut out space on the left, he reappears in Mordor III in the same place and then again in IV as a flautist on one leg, and above him are the parted legs of a woman receiving the flute as a phallus and so the cutaway ridge above the character has turned into her parted legs.

d. vii) Intersecting head
III and VI both have a small head of some sort eclipsing a larger head,

d. viii) Nommo
IV and V both contain entities that are impressions Dogon petroglyphs representing the amphibious Nommo of their legends, supposedly extraterrestrials from Sirius, which back in the 70s was an interesting subject of discussion for people interested in mythology and mysteries

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