About the film
About the painting
The painting was commissioned for John Jacob Astor IV as an adornment for the hotel he financed, the Knickerbocker, at the southeast corner of Broadway and 42d Street. Parrish’s Quaker upbringing made him reluctant to paint a mural for a bar but the artist was offered a kingly sum for 1906, $5,000, to complete it.
After the Knickerbocker was converted to an office building, the painting was moved to the St. Regis, at 2 East 55th Street, in the mid-1930’s. It became the centerpiece of the bar, which was already famous for being the birthplace of the Bloody Mary cocktail.
The painting became a signature feature of the hotel that would later be inhabited by Ernest Hemingway and Marlene Dietrich, and where Salvador Dalí stayed for a decade. Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio lived there, and John Lennon and Yoko Ono took up residence in 1971 before moving to the Dakota.
This painting launched Parrish career. Some of his paintings have sold for millions.