What are we exhibiting? : A reflection



“I was standing with Sue and Tansy tonight as they spoke so eloquently about the woman surrounding us all. I listened to these minds that held a passion and an insight into the world of Marilyn Monroe. They contemplated the ‘mortality’ of Marilyn and questioned whether it was this mortality that people were and are still drawn to, or is it Marilyn’s ‘humanity’ that people find so captivating.”

I wrote this down after the Friday exhibition viewing at the Bendigo Art Gallery. Since then they’ve been echoes. I’ve heard them in every moment I’ve had reflecting on the Marilyn Experience. Even now I continue to wonder about how we should view Marilyn vs. how we do view her.

By that token I have two understandings.

The exhibition itself is made up of pieces of Marilyn, all frozen in time. I think that’s what reinforces a sense of the eternal woman. In this respect we become drawn to her mortality.

However, I also think that the way the exhibition is presented is less like trying to freeze her in time. I think Tansy was trying to bring her back to life for us.  Now in this respect we become drawn to her humanity.

I have no conclusion yet. I rather think that it is up to the individual and how they perceive her.

But then again, I don’t know if I feel comfortable choosing one or the other. Marilyn wasn’t loved for just one thing. She was cherished and admired for all the things that made her who she was.

In the end, that’s what really makes her so enduring.


Written by Kira Hyde
19 April, 2016.


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