Bert Stern, the famous commercial and fashion photographer of the 60s, was the last to be granted a sitting by Marilyn Monroe six weeks before her tragic death. The three-day session yielded amazing pictures—fashion, portrait, and nude studies—of indescribable sensual and human vibrancy, of which Mr. Stern’s favorites are published in this book.
The monumental body of work by the master photographer and the Hollywood actress marks a climax in the history of star photography. It is a unique affirmation of the erotic dimension of photography and the eroticism of taking photos, and it is the world’s finest tribute to Marilyn Monroe.
In 1954 Bert Stern opened his first studio in New York. Besides working for IBM, Vogue, Glamour, Life, Revlon, and Smirnoff, he is famous for his portraits of celebrities such as Anna Nicole Smith, Elizabeth Taylor, Gary Cooper, Louis Armstrong, Catherine Deneuve, as well as Marilyn Monroe.
Accompanying the incredible photos are Marilyn’s conversations with the photographer: “I’m not going to take off my pants,” she declared. “Just roll them down, then.” She rolled them way down low on her hips so I could see the label, which read JAX. I saw the scar now. It was on the right side of her stomach. A blemish, an imperfection that only made her seem more vulnerable and accentuated the incredible smoothness of her skin. She was the color of champagne, the color of alabaster. We were ready to begin.