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Andy Warhol's Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Series

By Admin A on 24 Jul 2017

Intro

The Marilyn Monroe screen print portfolio was completed in 1967, a few years after the actress passed away in 1962.  The portfolio of 10 screen prints was one of the first prints Warhol printed and distributed through Factory Additions, New York. The name of this company references to Warhol’s studio known as “The Factory”.

full portfolio of andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprints

Marilyn and Andy

For Warhol, Marilyn was already a familiar subject. He initially began depicting the actress in the Marilyn Diptych, 1962, shortly after her death. The Marilyn Diptych is a silkscreen painting which contains fifty images of the actress, all taken from the 1953 film Niagara. Warhol explained “In August 62 I started doing silkscreens. I wanted something stronger that gave more of an assembly line effect. With silkscreening you pick a photograph, blow it up, transfer it in glue onto silk, and then roll ink across it so the ink goes through the silk but not through the glue. That way you get the same image, slightly different each time. It was all so simple quick and chancy. I was thrilled with it. When Marilyn Monroe happened to die that month, I got the idea to make screens of her beautiful face the first Marilyns.”

Half of the diptych was heavily pigmented while the other half was colored in black and white. Overall, the work was a commentary on the relation between Monroe’s life and death.

marilyn monroe diptych

The Marilyn Monroe Screenprint Portfolio

Warhol’s Marilyn Monroe, 1967 portfolio is seen as an extension of the initial silkscreen painting. Each image from the portfolio is sized 36 x 36”, considerably large and a closer crop of Monroe’s face. Each print is vibrantly colored to reflect her vivacious personality. In many of the prints, her iconic lips are boldly colored a deep red. Many of the prints also emphasize her platinum blonde hair by adding variants of yellow. In one of the prints, the actress is colored in silver and black, a stark departure from its vivid counterparts. This brings to mind the effect of watching the actress on the cinema screen in black and white. The dark colors are also a somber reminder of the actress’s passing. The colors ultimately bring to life Marilyn Monroe’s iconic status and celebrity glamor. By creating repetitive imagery, Warhol evokes her ubiquitous celebrity status.

andy warhol marilyn monroe in pink red with yellow lips
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.22)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint with light green background and blonde hair
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.23)
andy warhol screenprint in black and silver with black background
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.24)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint in lime green background and green face
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.25)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint with grey background and faded texture
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.26)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint in pink and gold
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.27)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint with orange hair and blue face
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.28)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint with orange hair and blue background
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.29)
andy warhol marilyn monroe screenprint with a hot pink face and green hair
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.30)
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.31)
Andy Warhol, Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn), 1967 Screenprint on Lenox Museum Board (F&S.II.31)

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