Bonhams auctions rare Monroe photographs 'in 3D' with $90,000 estimate


Gentlemen prefer blondes... In 3D, apparently. Bonhams' Entertainment Memorabilia sale on December 14 includes a simply striking set of three-dimensional photographs of Marilyn Monroe.

The set carries an estimate of $70,000-90,000.

The unseen photographs show the Gentleman Prefer Blondes star in a pink cocktail dress, apparently enjoying her celebrity lifestyle at a party thrown by the legendary crooner and bandleader Ray Anthony in 1952.

The 10 colour three-dimensional negatives were each taken by Lani Carlson. Carlson was a sound engineer at Anthony's launch party for his hit song 'Marilyn', and also an amateur photographer in his spare time.

Carlson immediately reached for his new state-of-the-art camera as Marilyn - in typical show-stopping style - descended upon the party in a helicopter.

Marilyn Monroe at singer Ray Anthony's 1952 party, in glorious 3D

These mesmerising images show Monroe stepping from the helicopter and posing for the cameras in front of a giant sheet of music.

Because Carlson's David White Stereo Realist Camera was a new 3D model with a special dual lens, these images 'leap out of the page' when eyed through a special viewer.

Even better, these images will be sold with their copyright, meaning the lucky buyer retains exclusive ownership of these historic documents of Monroe at Ray Anthony's party.

Monroe, of course, was always the consummate professional and this party for Anthony's 'Marilyn' single wasn't the only time she gamely took to Hollywood's promotional treadmill.

Other examples for sale to collectors include this promotional slip for the Marx Brothers' movie, Love Happy, in which Monroe's sex symbol status landed her a role.

Marilyn touches down at Anthony's party in a helicopter

While promoting this film in 1949, Monroe met several children at the Children's Home of Rockford.

Photographs show children from the occasion holding promotional slips like this one. Ours for sale has been autographed by Monroe on the reverse.

Eye appeal can be crucial to a collectibles' performance on the auction block, and these 3D photographs have it in spades.

The average value of a Monroe autograph has gone up in value from £2,950 to £6,750 in the last 11 years - a rise of 128.8% - which should also guarantee plenty of attention for her photographs in Bonhams' December sale.

The auction will be held in Los Angeles, California.

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