Exhibitions: Marilyn Monroe at the Getty Images gallery

Marilyn Monroe is an icon if not the icon of Hollywood glamour, she’s the feature of Andy Warhol’s most recognised piece and her look still inspires the red carpet today. A Friday night film viewing of ‘My week with Marilyn’ was the start of my weekend with Marilyn as it reminded me of the exhibition which opened at the Getty Images gallery, showing images and memorabilia marking 50 years since her death.

You’ll find the Getty Images gallery on Eastcastle Street which is just a few metres off Oxford Street, making it a great option for getting out of the hustle and bustle of the high street. The exhibition itself was informative but compact so I reckon if you’re not the type who likes to spend a good few minutes taking in art or images it could be a short detour or done in your lunch hour. It’s also free!

If you do decide to make a visit (which I definitely recommend), what you’ll find is Marilyn brought to life a little. Through the film I got an insight into how she was seen and adored by others and her own insecurities and mental difficulties. Through the exhibition you could see how she was adored in real life and her unrivalled glamour. The images show her in both natural surroundings and film star settings, showing both vulnerability and an ability to transform into the icon we recognise today. My favourites were those in Grand Central Station as I love New York and they really summed up her every day glamour.

A selection of some of her real costumes are also on display, these really help you picture those famous curves (she had a tiny waist!) and how these were put to effect in films. It was interesting to see the dress from ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’ as it was this film which features in ‘My Week with Marilyn’.

For a taster of the exhibition, you’ll find a few images here. If you want to see the star in action, you can find a trailer of ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’ on YouTube.

Have you popped into the Getty Gallery before? Seen the exhibition? Be great to know what you think, especially if you’re a photographer as it’d be great to get a professional angle.


  1. April 25, 2012 / 9:25 pm

    As a huge Marilyn fan, I cannot wait to see this exhibition and the film ‘My week with Marilyn’. No doubt it’ll leave me in the mood to watch ‘Some like it hot’.

    • ThisCityLifeLondon
      April 25, 2012 / 9:29 pm

      I was thinking a film with the real Marilyn would have been the perfect ending to the weekend! You’ll have to let me know what you think of the exhibition as a fellow keen photographer!