Toni Frissell (1907-1988). Along the shore of Long Island Sound the clear winter sky follows a narrow curving road bordered by slender trees. Behind them appears a stately white seventeenth-century house lit sharply by the brilliant sunlight reflected against snow still on the ground. A pond in the foreground edged by a broad weeping willow lends a nineteenth-century touch to the scene. Indeed, entering the gate is like stepping into a Currier and Ives print. Speaking from the deep curved-back Victorian chair over coffee after dinner, Toni Frissell recalls her life’s story as it were a book, each chapter an adventure story. She tells stories in sequence, inspired by the pictures in the piles of red leather scrapbooks she has kept over the years. Her husband, Mac, interjects his own memories, and after a while it is all there: friends and family scenes, the spectacular skiing trips they have shared, the sports and the fashions, the rich and famous, tea with the Churchills at Number 10 Downing Street, the experience of following American soldiers during World War II at the Italian font or on an air base in England. In photographs of her then and now Toni shows an innate sense of style, fashionably lean and elegant. Throwing a loden cape over her shoulders, she still looks the part of the fashionable, dashing, young-hearted photographer she played throughout her long career.
Margaretta K. Mitchell: “Recollections: Ten Women of Photography,” 1979, p.102.
Words are from the exhibition catalog, “Recollections: Ten Women of Photography“
September 21, 1979 – November 04, 1979. “This exhibition studies the lives of ten women and reveals in each a versatility previously obscured and a greatness not fully recognized. Berenice Abbott, Ruth Bernhard, Carlotta M. Corpron, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Nell Dorr, Toni Frissell, Laura Gilpin, Lotte Jacobi, Consuelo Kanaga, Barbara Morgan. Each photographer is represented by twenty images. Curated by Margaretta K. Mitchell.“