Marilyn Monroe photographs come to auction for the first time


2015-06-26 12:29:44


Marilyn Monroe photographs come to auction for the first time

A series of limited prints by Richard Miller show the star when she was young and innocent

In recent days, the news have been filled with variations on the story that a sex-tape featuring Marilyn Monroe is to be auctioned, with the price-tag expected to be up to $500,000 (though not if it's not really her, as some have claimed).

Certainly, the image of the classic blonde bombshell doing something wrong or naughty is attractive to a great many collectors. Previously a film showing her apparently smoking cannabis provoked enormous excitement.

That film was bought by collector Keya Morgan, who owns many pieces of Monroe memorabilia including her bible. He paid the anonymous cameraman 165,250 ($268,000).

Marilyn Monroe or Norma Jean in a Puppy-in-Basket photoMarilyn Monroe or Norma Jean in a Puppy-in-a-Basket photo

But it's also nice to see a more innocent side to Monroe, and that opportunity is coming up at Heritage next week in the form of a series of previously unseen photographs taken by one Richard Miller.

Dating back to 1946, before the coining of stage name Marilyn Monroe (she was born Norma Jeane Dougherty, and Miller called her 'Nonnie'), the shots show a grinning 19 year old girl. Although already beautiful, there is no sense of the unattainable Hollywood glamour.

Norma Jean or Marilyn Monroe in a white swimsuitNorma Jean or Marilyn Monroe in a white swimsuit

These are examples from limited edition print runs of up to 50, and estimated at around $1,000-2,000, though as we've seen with recently-sold early Beatles photographs such listings can be way off the mark.

A month ago, Monroe's famous 'subway' white dress from The Seven Year Itch sold for a world record $5.6m from the Debbie Reynolds collection of movie memorabilia. Miller's photos will sell as part of Heritage's Music and Entertainment auction on July 29 in Dallas.

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