Apparent Marilyn Monroe Sculpture Has New Home On Michigan Avenue, Just Legs For Now

Workers and tourists alike in downtown Chicago were treated to a bit of a surprise Tuesday morning when a statute depicting a familiar-looking pair of legs in the lower half of a white dress met their gaze outside of the Tribune building on Michigan Avenue.

The statue, according to NBC Chicago, is the bottom half of a new 26-foot statue designed by J. Seward Johnson and the Sculpture Foundation. The work is due to be unveiled, in full, on Friday evening.

The legs, accompanied by the long white skirt "floating" into the air and the subway grate just below a pair of the legs' high-heel shoe-adorned, red toenail polish-wearing feet all seem to point toward film legend Marilyn Monroe's well-known pose from the 1955 film "The Seven Year Itch."

Despite the clear likeness, spokespeople for the installation have declined to confirm rumors that the new statue, which is scheduled to be on display in Pioneer Court through the spring of 2012, depicts Monroe, NBC Chicago reported.

Johnson was previously responsible for a large "American Gothic"-inspired sculpture installed temporarily in the same spot, just off the Magnificent Mile, in 2008, as well as a 20-foot-tall sculpture depicting King Lear the following year, according to the Chicago Tribune. His sculptures have also been installed in public spaces in cities throughout the world, including Sydney, Australia; Washington, D.C.; New York; Portland, Ore., to name a few.