Bert Stern, ‘Marilyn With Diamonds (Later Impression)’, 2012, Waddington's
Bert Stern, ‘Marilyn With Diamonds (Later Impression)’, 2012, Waddington's
Bert Stern, ‘Marilyn With Diamonds (Later Impression)’, 2012, Waddington's

From the Catalogue:
Best known for his candid photographs of Marilyn Monroe, Bert Stern’s Marilyn with Diamonds reveals her playfulness side marred by tragedy. Over the course of his career, Stern stated that taking photographs had always been his own way of seeing people or even relating to them in ways he could have never imagined. His ability to capture his subject’s most carefree state is a testament to his genius as a photographer – in these photographs, we can feel the richness of Marilyn’s smile; her happiness and her coquettishness instantaneously transmitted to the viewer. Shot over three days in June 1962 at the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, Stern made the most of this photo shoot, which was to be the very last for the star before her untimely death.

This collection of photographs (which also includes other lots in this auction, Marilyn with a Pink Scarf, lot 16 and Marilyn Monroe Crucifix, lot 44) were showcased in “Marilyn Monroe: The Last Sitting” published in 2000. Along with his photographic contemporaries of the 60s and 70s, artists such as Irving Penn and Richard Avedon, Stern elevated clean-cut, refined magazine advertising into fine art that received critical acclaim. Although very simple in composition, very few accessories (strings of pearls and diamonds) and a limited black and white palette, Marilyn in Diamonds captures the essence of old Hollywood glamour, breaking down the barriers between the artist and sitter.
Courtesy of Waddington's

Signature: signed and titled “Marilyn” in red pencil recto, signed, and dated 2012 with copyright symbol in red pencil to the artist’s stamp verso, Signed in red crayon, titled “Marilyn with Diamonds” and dated “2012” in black ink to the accompanying artist’s Certificate of Authenticity label

Prominent Gallery, Europe

About Bert Stern

Bert Stern was one of the leading photographers of the 1950s and 1960s; he redefined fashion photography with his clean and direct style. Like his contemporaries Richard Avedon and Irving Penn, Stern pioneered a new photographic aesthetic, preferring uncluttered and emotionally direct images that strove not only to showcase the human figure but also to capture a sense of the subject’s psychology. “What makes a great model is her need, her desire; and it’s exciting to photograph desire,” Stern once said. Encouraged to pursue photography by Stanley Kubrick, Stern’s reputation quickly grew as he worked for commercial companies such as Revlon. He became a mainstay for fashion magazines like Vogue, and his portfolio featured such superstars as Twiggy, Truman Capote, and Audrey Hepburn. Stern famously captured Marilyn Monroe in The Last Sitting, the actress’s last group of portraits taken six weeks before her death.

American, 1929-2013, Brooklyn, New York, based in New York, New York