Marilyn Monroe and Diana Princess of Wales have so much in common. The most obvious their beauty, how short and dramatic their lives were and people’s obsession with them.
Born Norma Jeane Mortenson in 1926, she endured a volatile children as a result of her mother’s mental illness and got married at just 16years old.
This year, it is 50 years since her death and yet Marilyn still holds many in thrall, inspiring movies such as “My week with Marilyn” and an exhibition by Getty Images gallery. Louise Garczewska, the gallery’s Director says: “No one can deny that Marilyn Monroe was a stunning woman who, 50 years after her death, continues to epitomise glamour.”
The gallery is showcasing for the first time Marilyn’s clothes and a collection of photography with dresses that has never been exhibited in London, and never together before. Also, many of the photographs have never been printed before.
One would think that after five decades people would surely be over Marilyn but her mystic lives on. Garczewska said: “Whilst she is an obvious style icon, I don’t think it is solely her outfits or fashion sense that have given her this enduring appeal. What is unique about Marilyn and what cements her position at the height of Hollywood glamour is how she comes across in photography. She possessed a unique ability where she was able to light up and respond to a camera – a very rare skill.”
Organisers say the exhibition, which opened on the 9th of March has had a ‘Stunning’ response. “This has been one of the best shows of the last ten years, Marilyn has proven to be so popular with all our clients from all walks of life and clients of all ages” Garczewska said. A clear indication that the obsession has not diminished with time. Young people today are still as fascinated by Marilyn as the women of her generation were.
The images showcase Marilyn’s entire career, with images from her childhood, her early modelling days and her final film, her journey from a shy young girl into an iconic powerhouse.
Garczewska thinks the media has misrepresented Marilyn and said: “The photography shown here at the Getty Images Gallery really reflects the true person, a woman striving to be great at not only acting, singing, the model, the icon, but someone wanting to be loved by all and someone so keen to prove that she was a bright intelligent woman, talented and beautiful”.
Whilst blond bombshell was her title in life, it is rather ironic that it has taken her 50th anniversary in death for people to realise there was more to Marilyn than just a pretty face and a beautiful body.