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Chicago’s Marilyn Monroe statue defaced by graffiti

Bryan Alaspa's picture

Police are looking for information and suspects in the defacement of a 26-foot statue of Marilyn Monroe located in downtown Chicago with graffiti.

The statue was just unveiled earlier this year. It depicts Monroe in her iconic pose standing over the subway grate while the wind blows her white dress up over her legs. It has been either beloved or hated by many residents in Chicago.

According to MSNBC, however, the statue has now been defaced by someone with a can of spray paint. The right leg of the statue, along the back of the calf, has now been defaced with nearly-illegible scrawl.

The statue was created by New Jersey-based artist Seward Johnson, who is famous for his potentially controversial statues. In addition to the Monroe statue, located at Pioneer Court Plaza just outside of Chicago’s NBC affiliate, there was also an American Gothic inspired statue there in 2008. After that a statue inspired by Shakespeare’s King Lear was located there.

The graffiti taggers got the statue and a pillar outside a nearby building. That building was located at 401 N. Michigan Avenue.

There are several surveillance cameras pointed at the statue, including cameras from the NBC affiliate. Police are said to be checking the security videos to see if they might have caught a shot of the vandals.

The Monroe statue has only been fully revealed on the plaza for about a month. Prior to the full unveiling just the legs of the statue were visible to passers by. Like most sculptures in Chicago this one has already become a tourist attraction and something much discussed by residents and local media.

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