James Rosenquist Marilyn Monroe, I 1962

  • Not on view

Screen icon and sex symbol Marilyn Monroe was a favorite subject of many Pop artists, and she figures prominently in more than fifteen works in the Museum’s collection. Here, in a tribute to the actress created soon after her suicide in 1962, Rosenquist inverted and fragmented her image and superimposed a portion of her name over it. He also included a segment of the brand name “Coca-Cola” in its trademark script, rendered upside down. Pairing Monroe with this famous logo suggests that she is as iconic an example of American popular culture as the ubiquitous soft drink.

Gallery label from 2011.
Additional text

Gripped by the suicide of screen icon Marilyn Monroe, James Rosenquist created a stylized, fragmented, and inverted portrait of Monroe interwoven and superimposed with disjointed parts of Marilyn’s name, image, and the trademark script of the Coca-Cola logo. By fragmenting Monroe’s image and combining her with another popular product, Rosenquist comments on how the late actress’s life and career had been co-opted and consumed by her superstar status.

In 1964, Rosenquist explained: “Painting is probably more exciting than advertising—so why shouldn’t it be done with that power and gusto, that impact? When I use a combination of fragments of things, the fragments or objects or real things are caustic to one another, and the title is also caustic to the fragments.”

Oil and spray enamel on canvas
7' 9" x 6' 1/4" (236.2 x 183.3 cm)
The Sidney and Harriet Janis Collection
Object number
© 2024 James Rosenquist/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY
Painting and Sculpture

Installation views

We have identified these works in the following photos from our exhibition history.

How we identified these works

In 2018–19, MoMA collaborated with Google Arts & Culture Lab on a project using machine learning to identify artworks in installation photos. That project has concluded, and works are now being identified by MoMA staff.

If you notice an error, please contact us at [email protected].


If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit https://www.moma.org/research/circulating-film.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].