Marilyn Monroe Pop Art Vandalism Site Causes Controversy

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It is a common belief that Marilyn Monroe was the first ever pop art icon. However, Andy Warhol drew Marilyn Monroe on several occasions in the 1950s and 1960s including one of a small self-portrait of himself as Marilyn Monroe. Andy Warhol is one of the most influential artists of all time. The self-portrait of Marilyn Monroe is a great example of how an artist can transform a celebrity into an art statement. Andy Warhol is famous for his soup cans, but he has also painted many well-known celebrities like Elvis Presley and Sammy Davis Jr.

Tina Mion, the woman behind this exhibit, drew her inspiration from the fact that Andy Warhol drew Marilyn Monroe several times during his career. The photo exhibit called “Marilyn” consists of different colored Marilyns arranged within a specific grid on the gallery walls. Each grid is assigned numbers from 1 to 24 corresponding with each piece in the exhibit. There are five different sized Marilyns, each color used represents a different mood: rage, depression, fear, lust and happiness.

Marilyn Monroe Pop Art Vandalism Site Causes Controversy: A blog that discusses art and public opinion:

A Pop Art site that uses Marilyn Monroe’s image painted in graffiti has upset the estate of the late actress. The site, known as ‘Marilyn Monroe Pop Art’, is a collection of images of the blonde bombshell, pasted onto famous works of art across the world.

The pictures include Monroe’s face added onto Mona Lisa and one of her standing in front of a Rothko painting.

Marilyn Monroe Pop Art Vandalism Site Causes Controversy

Yahoo! News UK & Ireland – Tuesday, 26 September 2008

The vandalism of pop art is complete. The piece has been tagged with graffiti, stickers have been applied and a wig is hanging from the top. David LaChapelle’s Marilyn Monroe pop art piece has become a target for vandalism on New York City’s Lower East Side.

Marilyn Monroe has been an icon in the world of pop art for some time. Her image is even used as a logo by Playboy magazine. However, this week LaChapelle’s pop art piece was vandalized and the culprits are unknown at this point. Some people are suspecting that it was just a publicity stunt to garner more attention for the work, which is currently being displayed near the corner of Orchard Street and Essex Street in Manhattan’s Lower East Side.

The famous pop art piece was created using pink vinyl letters to spell out her name on a building where she once posed in front of for a calendar photo shoot back in 1953. The lettering was put up there in memory of Marilyn Monroe on what would have been her 85th birthday.*

A graffiti artist in Melbourne, Australia, has been vandalizing a public art installation that features a Marilyn Monroe cutout. The artist has been slapping on colored dots over her face and body. The artist is not trying to ruin the art piece, but rather create a dialogue about the portrayal of women in art.

The street art is by a well-known Melbourne artist named Lushsux and the pop icon is on display outside of a barber shop. The graffiti artist has been going around town changing and adding things to various pieces of public art. In addition to Marilyn Monroe, he has tagged images of other characters from pop culture and even photo shopped them into famous paintings such as the “American Gothic.”

The creator says he does it for fun, but also because he believes that this kind of art promotes unrealistic standards of beauty. He wants people to stop taking these images so seriously and see that they are just photos or drawings.*

This is an interesting commentary on the nature of art. Some people believe that any style/form of art which is not widely acknowledged or approved by the majority is not “true” art, and therefore should not be taken seriously. The author goes into detail about how this type of thinking is flawed and how it can potentially stifle creativity by discouraging artists from trying new things. These so-called “artists” make the claim that they are merely expressing their own opinions and beliefs through vandalism, but this is just an excuse to avoid punishment for committing a crime. The author’s main point is that no matter what type of art you are into, whether it be graffiti or pop-art, you should be allowed to pursue your passion as long as it does not infringe upon anyone else’s rights or property.

TOPIC: Do you think this type of vandalism should be considered art? Why or why not? Explain your answer with specific details from the reading.

    Using specific details from the reading, explain why you agree or disagree with the author’s position regarding art and public opinion.

    In addition to providing examples from the text to support your position, use at least one outside source. You may use your class notes, a book, an e-book

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