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CHICAGO (CBS) – Chicagoans have only one more week to spend with Marilyn.
The 25-foot-tall pop-art statue of actress Marilyn Monroe along Michigan Avenue just north of the Chicago River will be removed beginning May 7, Zeller Realty Group, which owns the land under Marilyn’s high heels, said in a news release.
The installation at Pioneer Court, made possible by the Sculpture Foundation, was always meant to be a temporary one.
Seward Johnson’s “Forever Marilyn” initially inspired debate when it was unveiled in the prominent Magnificent Mile location last July. The bronze and stainless steel sculpture recreates Marilyn at her zenith in the famous shot from the 1955 film “The Seven-Year Itch,” in which a blast of air from a street vent sends her skirt billowing upward.
Some thought the pose was a little tacky for the outdoor location, while others said Ms. Monroe’s exposed legs and old-fashioned undergarment are pretty tame by today’s standards.
Either way, the statue prompted tourists and locals alike to pose next to it — or beneath it — for photographs. Vandals even tagged the sculpture at least twice.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed seeing the variety of reactions to the sculpture. The City of Chicago is richly appreciative of public art in all its forms, and is a model for other cities to follow,” artist Johnson said in a prepared statement.