Forever Marilyn

sculpture by John Seward Johnson II


Forever Marilyn is a giant statue of Marilyn Monroe designed by Seward Johnson. The statue is made to look like one of the most famous images of Monroe, taken from the movie The Seven Year Itch. The statue was created in July 2011. It has been displayed in the United States and Australia.

Design and locationEdit

The 26-foot-tall sculpture is a super-sized tribute to Marilyn Monroe's famous scene from Billy Wilder's 1955 comedy, The Seven-Year Itch. It shows the instant a blast of air from a New York City Subway grate raises her white dress.[1]

The statue was displayed at Pioneer Court in Chicago, Illinois, before it was moved to Palm Springs, California in 2012.[2]

It left Palm Springs on March 27, 2014. It was moved to the 42-acre Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey in 2014 to honor Seward Johnson.[3][4] Due to its popularity, the statue remained on display at the GFS through September 2015.[5]

The statue was next displayed in 2016 in Australia in connection with the Bendigo Art Gallery's Marilyn Monroe exhibition.[6]

ReceptionEdit

In 2011 the statue was vandalized three times, being splashed with red paint. According to the executive director of the Chicago Public Arts Group, this was because the statue is controversial.[7]

The public, however, generally liked the statue: "Forever Marilyn journeyed back to Hamilton in April 2014, arriving at the Grounds for Sculpture on a truck as two dozen people cheered and took pictures. During the cross-country journey, people snapped photos of the sculpture in parking lots and along highways and posted them on social media."[8]

There is at least one full size counterfeit. The discarded sculpture was photographed in a dump in China.[9]

ReferencesEdit

  1. "The Seven Year Itch (Trivia)". IMDB.com. Retrieved 29 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. "Forever Marilyn: Palm Springs sets goodbye party". The Desert Sun. Retrieved 29 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. "Business News: Forever Marilyn to Stay in Palm Springs until Mid-November".
  4. "Grounds For Sculpture Johnson Retrospective". Archived from the original on 2014-10-05. Retrieved 2016-08-29.
  5. "Goodbye Norma Jean: 'Forever Marilyn' sculpture comes down". NJ.com. Retrieved 22 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. "American crew assemble Marilyn sculpture that gallery director Karen Quinlan says will be a conversation-starter", Bendigo Advertiser, February 2, 2016.
  7. Reese, Ronnie.
  8. "Goodbye Norma Jean: 'Forever Marilyn' sculpture comes down". NJ.com. Retrieved 22 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. "A 26-Foot Marilyn Monroe Sculpture Meets Its End in a Chinese Dump". Hyperallergic.com. Retrieved 29 August 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)