Marilyn Monroe, born Norma Jeane Mortenson, was only 20 when these beautiful black and white photographs were taken.
Travelling through Malibu, the future blonde bombshell posed for a series of photographs taken by her then-partner, André de Dienes.
The images depict a carefree moment in the life of Norma Jeane, just a few years before the shy red-head would be catapulted to international stardom.
The images were recently re-released, with the following words from Dienes himself.
“She was twenty and had never experienced the intoxication of success, yet already there was a shadow over her radiance, in her laughter. I asked her to react instinctively, without giving herself time to think, to the words happiness, surprise, reflection, doubt, peace of mind, sadness, self-torment… and death. When I said ‘death’ she took hold of the folded dark-cloth and covered her head with it. Death to her was blackness, nothingness. I tried to coax another reaction from her. Death might be a beginning, the hope of an everlasting light. She shook her head: ‘That’s what death is for me.’ She turned towards me, her face set and despairing, eyes dulled, her mouth suddenly bereft of colour. To her, death was the end of everything.”