Fortuny, Mariano

1838 – 1874

Mariano José Maria Bernardo Fortuny y Marsal was born and raised in Catalonia, Spain, where his artistic talents were recognized and encouraged at an early age.  As a young man of 21, he was selected by the government to depict the campaigns of the Spanish-Moroccan War, a theme which he continued to explore throughout his career.  His travels throughout Morocco and Spain are reflected in his art in both the subject matter and the vivid, exotic coloration and Orientalist style of his work.  He died quite suddenly of malaria at the age of 36, but his creative genius continued in his son, the fashion designer Mariano Fortuny, known especially for his densely pleated fabrics.