Sergius Golowin introduces HR Giger
to the work of HP Lovecraft

 Leads from :  

H R Giger and Sergius Golowin

a) Introducing Giger to the Necronomicon name
In the late 1960s, HR Giger's friend and "Spiritual Father", Sergius Golowin, who had worked in Basel as a library assistant, archivist and writer, a real connoisseur of the fantastic who was a well known researcher in fables, myths, legend, and esotericism, and was an advocate of LSD. 

He was someone who taught those interested in magic and was able to explain it in a historical context.

Through him, Giger learnt a lot about magic and mystical symbolism.

Sergius gave a book of Lovecraft's stories to HR Giger and introduced him to the idea of  the mysterious Necronomicon book that didn't exist but HP Lovecraft talked about it in his writings.

Sergius came to the conclusion that Giger's entire body of work could easily be the illustrations from this non existent Necronomicon.

For a while it appeared that Giger did actually think that book did exist and an arab, Abdul Alhazred was supposed to have collected all the secrets of magic in it, and many other people still do believe that somehow it must exist.

Giger actually came to admire the work of Lovecraft but states that his main influence on his work is simply the name of Alhazred's grimoire

b) Giger's Necronomicon soon materialises
Sergius gave a series of paintings by Giger the name Necronom after the Necronomicon and Giger was content to use the title.

Golowin had often given different names to Giger's paintings that he used.

The next thing that Sergius did was to tell everyone that the walls of Giger's home were covered with paintings from the Necronomicon, which at the time was not true.

However  Giger's Passage and The Spell turned Giger's walls into a Lovecraftian temple until they were moved to his museum in Gruyeres.

As it went, Golowin who had often given names to Giger's paintings had decided that Giger's book of art work would be named Giger's Necronomicon.

Giger was content to go along with this since he found Lovecraft's work an inspiration.

c) See: Wikipedia for more information about Sergius Golowin

source quotes
  1. H. R. Giger: While I was looking for a title for my gloomy pictures, Sergius Golowin, my spiritual father and the well-known Swiss researcher of myths, drew my attention to Lovecraft and - since the original book is only preserved in fragments -, suggested the name "Giger's Necronomicon". This title sewed not a little confusion, since Lovecraft followers thought they had at last found their Necronomicon. (Giger ARh+ p40) 
  2. Tom Gabriel Warrior: The creatures in your Necronom IV and V paintings of 1976 basically represent prototypes of the later Alien creature. Do you remember the thoughts behind the Necronom? What are its origins?

    H P Lovecraft
    H. R. Giger: It was simply a name for a character in my paintings. Most titles were suggested to my by the writer Sergius Golowin. Incidentally, he also proposed the title Necronomicon. To him, it suited my world. I also read Lovecraft's writings, which influenced my work significantly
    Tom Gabriel Warrior: I didn't know that Golowin had a hand in this
    H. R. Giger: yes, Golowin became very important to me due to his title suggestions. I never knew what to call my paintings  (Zero Tolerance #26, p27)
  3. SPIEGEL ONLINE: Den Schriftsteller Sergius Golovin haben Sie als "eine Art Vaterfigur" beschrieben. Was haben Sie von ihm gelernt?
    SPIEGEL ONLINE: The writer Sergius Golowin you have described as "a father figure". What have you learned from him?
    Giger: Sergius hat in Basel als Bibliothekar gearbeitet, war Mythenforscher und ein Verfechter von LSD. Er hat Interessierte in Magie unterrichtet und uns die geschichtlichen Zusammenhänge erklärt. Durch ihn habe ich viel über Magie und mystische Symbolik gelernt. Leider ist er vor zwei Jahren gestorben.
    Giger: Sergius has worked in Basel as a librarian, was mythologist and an advocate of LSD. He has taught those interested in magic and explains the historical context. Through him, I learned a lot about magic and mystical symbolism. Unfortunately he died two years ago.
  4. ArtSync: Let's talk about some of your influences. How about H.P. Lovecraft—
    GIGER:Yes, Lovecraft. An old friend of mine, Sergius Golowin, a specialist in myths and fables and magic, gave me a book by Lovecraft in the late 60s and introduced me to Necronomicon: The Book of the Dead. He said the entire corpus of my work could easily be pages out of the Necronomicon. I very much admire Lovecraft, but his main influence upon my own was simply the name of Alhazred's grimoire [Lovecraft character's book of magic] — the Necronomicon. There is a funny story concerning Golowin. He used to tell everyone that the walls of my home were covered with paintings from the Necronomicon, which at the time was not true at all, but after a while it became true. Passages and The Spell turned my walls into a sort of Lovecraftian temple, but not anymore, since all those works are now in Gruyeres [Switzerland], at the museum. (ArtSync Magazine Fall 2009, p60)
  5. Vice: Can you tell me about the dream behind Necronomicon your book that Ridley Scott used as the template for Alien?
    HR Giger: These things come from H.P. Lovecraft. In the ’70s I was very familiar with Lovecraft. ( 2009)
  6. Dr Blackthorn: It feels as if a HP Lovecraft renaissance is on the cards, and that people are sick of zombies and vampires in the media and need something deeper and more intelligent. Do you think the stars are aligned, and the time is right for a Lovecraft revival, and Cthulhu to rise? Obviously, your work was influenced by Lovecraft in your early days, - does his work have any influence on you today?
    HR Giger: It no longer really has an influence, since I no longer paint. But there was a period in my life, during the 1970s, when Lovecraftian ideas had a significant impact on many aspects of my work. My friend , Swiss writer Sergius Golowin, had quite a lot to do with that. His suggestions in this regard had a considerable effect on both my paintings and their titles (Bizarre magazine, p66) 
  7. Hans Ulrich Obrich:  Tell us a little more about Necronomicon. Hans Rudi Giger :  Sergius Golowin—a library assistant, archivist and writer, and a real connoisseur of the fantastic— told me about H.P. Lovecraft’s writings. He felt that my works were the illustrations to this book that doesn’t exist.
    Patrick Frey:  So the term Necronomicon is from Lovecraft?
    Hans Rudi Giger : Right. Necronomicon is a book that doesn’t exist. Lovecraft is always talking about this book in his fiction.
    Carmen Giger:  For a while you thought the book actually did exist. An old Arab is supposed to have collected all the secrets of magic in it.
    Hans Rudi Giger  Abdul Alhazred is the author’s name.
    Patrick Frey:  A fictitious secret book, in other words, which many believe exists, but which in fact does not. And you did the illustrations for it. This is a terrific story!(
  8. La Estadea: En tu obra se advierte un trasfondo literario importante , de hecho tus pinturas evocan ciertos pasajes de la literatura fantastica.
    HRGiger: Sí es cierto, siempre he leído mucho. Mi afición po
    r la lectura es anterior inclusio a mi pasión por le arte. Leía muchos krimis de prequeño y después empecé con Allan Poe. A finales de los sesenta conocí la obra de Lovecraft y me encantó. Un amigo escritor, Segius Golowin me sugirió que porqué no titular a mi libro "Giger's Necronomicon" si del original sólo quedaban fragmentos y así lo hice. En lost setenta también me aficioné mucho a la literatura oculista, Crowley, Levi, y sobre todo Gutave Meyrink que es de mis favoritos. En aquella época me interesaba mucho la magia, las brujas, pero por su component estético, nunca he pertenecido a sectas ni nada por el estilo, mucha gente malinterpreta mis obras, soy una persona muy normal, tanto que uno se aburriría conmigo (riras). pero en fin leo de todo, desde Philip K Dick o William Gibson a Stephen King, aunque reconozco que siento predilección por la literatura de terror.
    TranslationLa Estadea:
    In your work have seen a major literary background, in fact your paintings evoke certain passages of fantastic literature.

    HRGiger: It is true, I have always read a lot. My love of reading is above inclusions to my passion for the art. I read a lot small crime stories and then I started with Allan Poe. At the end of the sixties, I met the work of Lovecraft, and I loved it. A writer friend, Segius Golowin suggested that why not title my book "Giger's Necronomicon" if there were only fragments of the original and so I did.  In the 1970s I also really much occult literature, Crowley, Levi, and above all Gutave Meyrink which is my favorite. At that time I was very much interested magic, witches, but for its aesthetic component, I have never belonged to cults or anything like that, many people misunderstood my works, I'm a very normal person, so that one is begun with me (riras). But in end I read everything from Philip K Dick or William Gibson to Stephen King, although I admit I feel fondness for the literature of terror. (La Estadea No 3, 1st August 2006)
  9. Carmen Giger: His fascination with the occult came from Sergius Golowin, a writer and close friend he met just as he was starting work on his Necronomicon book. Golowin knew a lot about the occult and mysticism and introduced Hans to people like HP Lovecraft and FM Murer. The light and dark snakes he used in his Spell paintings for instance, were a mythological reference to the Fall of Adam and Eve. Spell III [1976] symbolises our quest for enlightenment with Baphomet symbolising humanity’s position between the animal kingdom and the divine. (


  1. Updated on July 3rd 2019 with information from Kaleidoscope magazine

  2. The title "The naming of the Necronom series" is changed to "Sergius Golowin introduces HR Giger to the work of HP Lovecraft"