The iconic pop star Marilyn Monroe had a friend called Milton H. Greene. He was a professional photographer. They lived together for quite a number of years and gelled well with each other.

Between 1950 and 1955, Greene shot some of Monroe's spectacular photographs which later became a part of historical archives. They are the most beautiful pictures of the lonely icon. Here she hides her pain behind a beautiful smile.

Seven of those 25 pictures taken by Greene are now part of an exposition in New Delhi's Crayon Capital Art Gallery at D-5 Defence Colony. But the photographs come here with a huge difference; varying from small to mammoth portraits done in mosaic, glass and precious metal. And they have been brought to India by Sicis – The Italian mosaic ‘Maison' art factory, a 20-year-old mosaic art brand in Italy which has opened its first showroom at the gallery.

The Monroe portraits, framed in varnished wood with mosaic inset and customised colours, have a limited 25 editions each and are meant for the super rich as they are priced between Rs 3 and 37 lakhs depending upon the intricacy and size.

Hand-made portraits

Says Max Francesconi, India Manager of Sicis, “These pictures belong to the Marilyn Monroe Foundation, but we took the rights to reproduce them in mosaic. Each mosaic composition is hand-made by Sicis artists in Italy, using authentic Sicis tesserae in Murano glass and precious metal known as ‘colibri'.”

Sicis has its own reasons to choose Monroe . “We are an interior brand. We wanted to cross our boundaries and initiate ourselves in art. And Marilyn being an iconic artiste who doesn't belong to a particular place, we thought her to be the best choice. We understand that though she portrayed herself like a ‘doll' she was smart enough to know how to be successful,” adds Max.

The newly opened showroom displays scintillating floors, walls, life size sculptures, mirrors and other art deco furnishings.

“We also can do customised mosaic art for people on demand,” says a gallery representative.

The Monroe exposition that travels to Chennai, Bangalore and Mumbai will stay in Delhi till this coming Sunday.