Pop Artist Richard Hamilton Dies

The British artist, Richard Hamilton, has died aged 89. One of his most famous works was ‘My Marilyn’ (1966), one of the few pop art pieces that succeeds in showing Marilyn as a human being as well as an icon.

“In ‘My Marilyn’, Hamilton takes as his source material George Barris’ colour photographs of Marilyn Monroe published after her death. Hamilton wrote: ‘M.M. demanded that the results of the photographic sessions be submitted to her for vetting before publication. She made indications, brutally and beautifully in conflict with the image, or on proofs and transparencies to give approval or reject, or suggestions for retouching that might make it acceptable.’ From these photographs Hamilton produced a series of black and white enlargements in three formats which he arranged as a collage for the first photographic screen for the print. This was used as the basis of a series of further manipulations for different versions. Hamilton preserved Marilyn’s own marks of approval or rejection, commenting that ‘The aggressive obliteration of her own image has a self-destructive implication that her death made all the more poignant: there is also a fortuitous narcissism, for the negating cross is also the childish symbol for a kiss.’ “

George Barris to Attend Marilyn’s Birthday Exhibition

George Barris, one of Marilyn’s last photographers, will appear at the opening night of ‘Happy Birthday Marilyn’ at the Andrew Weiss Gallery, Los Angeles, on June 1st.

“These photographs are very dear and personal to me. Marilyn was much more than a photography subject, she was a friend. She had an inner light that comes through in her images, even many years later, and I am pleased to work with the Andrew Weiss Gallery to share my experience of Marilyn with her fans and the public.”

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Glasvegas to Marilyn: ‘Euphoria, Take My Hand’

A 1962 shot by George Barris, of Marilyn wrapped in a green towel, sipping champagne on Santa Monica Beach, features on the cover of EUPHORIC///HEARTBREAK, the new album by Scottish band Glasvegas.

The album was recorded in Santa Monica, so perhaps Marilyn represents euphoria: and the man in the picture, heartbreak…

“Turning pain into joy is the stuff that dreams are made of for an album as thrillingly ambitious as it is enigmatic…” Emily Mackay, NME

Barris Photos Sold at Auction

Four photographs of Marilyn, taken by George Barris, were sold at the Vision 21 auction at Bonham’s today.

“Portraits of the iconic blonde by photographer George Barris exceeded pre-auction estimates, bringing in £1,320/$2,113 (1962’s “Marilyn in the Garden” and 1954’s “Marilyn at the Window,” each), £780/$1,249 (1962’s “Marilyn on the Beach”), and £840/$1,345 (1962’s “Marilyn on the Sofa”), respectively.”

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