Frida Kahlo standing next to an agave plant (quick-ship)

by Toni Frissell

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Artist Statement

Never comfortable in the traditional studio setting, Toni Frissell was known for bringing fashion photography outside in an almost cinematic style. Captured in 1937 while Frissell was a staff photographer for Vogue magazine, Frida Kahlo standing next to an agave plant is an outtake from a shoot accompanying “Señoras of Mexico”, an editorial feature and interview by Alice-Leone Moats. Frissell’s tendency to use a low point of view and dramatic angles shines through, making Kahlo appear larger-than-life, almost monumental in stature. Frissell and Kahlo proved to be an unmatchable pair. Frissell’s distinct, unconventional style of photography complimented Kahlo’s identity as a proud mestiza artist known for juxtaposing traditional Mexican and modern Western fashion. The resulting photographs would become some of the most famous and recognizable images of the painter.

Why We Love It

Frissell loved an unorthodox angle, and her use of a low point of view in Frida Kahlo standing next to an agave plant gives her subject a bold, dramatic edge. Kahlo appears almost monumental in stature, a figure of fortitude and divinity, grace and guts. She raises her shawl like a wing and gazes directly into the camera. Her expression is enigmatic, but her beautiful brow furrows subtly in concentration—or is that confrontation? Her mouth rests, lips closed, in a mysterious mid-point. Kahlo’s specific state of mind is hard to decipher, but there’s nothing ambivalent about the impression she makes in this image. She seems unshakable, idiosyncratic, complex, heavy with history, and capable of surviving against all odds. The huge agave plant behind her echoes this adaptive tenacity. It is exquisitely unusual, hearty, drought-resistant, made to master its arid environment. Its leaves are studded with sharp spikes to ward off predators. It is armed and unabashedly itself. Surely Frissell considered the correlation when she photographed Kahlo in the fore ... Read more on the blog!


+ This Quick Ship artwork ships in one business day.
+ This edition is not eligible for discount.
+ Limited-edition, exclusive to 20x200
+ Museum quality: archival inks, 100% cotton rag paper unless noted
+ Handcrafted custom-framing is not available.

Our quoted dimensions are for the size of paper containing the images, not the printed image itself. We do not alter the aspect ratio, nor do we crop or resize the artists’ originals. All of our prints have a minimum border of .5 inches to allow for framing.


Innova Fibaprint Warm Cotton Gloss

Edition Structure:
11"x11" | edition of 250

Toni Frissell

Antoinette Frissell Bacon, known as Toni Frissell, was born in New York City in 1907. She trained as an actress and worked in advertising before beginning her career in photography in the early 1930s. Mostly self-taught, Frissell found work at Vogue first as a caption writer, then as a fashion photographer. From 1941 through 1950, she worked for Harper’s Bazaar, but her work for the American Red Cross and later the Women’s Army Corps during World War II encouraged her toward photojournalism. It was her varied experiences and her unconventional background in photography that led her to bring models out... Read More
of the studio and into the outdoors. Frissell’s style felt fresh, spontaneous, and active in a fashion world used to large format cameras and subjects standing still. Her “action-fashion” photographs were the beginning of a new trend in postwar fashion imagery. Frissell eventually tired of fashion photography, and shifted her career into more lifestyle and sports work for the likes of LIFE, Look, Vogue, and Sports Illustrated until her retirement in 1967. In 1971, she donated her photographs to the Library of Congress, making them available to the public. Frissell died due to complications from Alzheimer’s disease in 1988, but her legacy lives on in her incredible work.
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