Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo,(May 11, 1871–May 3, 1949), son of the painter Mariano Fortuny y Marsal, was a Spanish fashion designer who opened his couture house in 1906 and continued until 1946. “Mrs. Condé Nast wearing one of the famous Fortuny tea gowns. This one has no tunic but is finely pleated, in the Fortuny manner, and falls in long lines, closely following the figure, to the floor.” Fortuny was born to an artistic family in Granada, Spain. His father, a genre painter, died when Fortuny was three years old and his mother, daughter of another famous painter, Raimundo de Madrazo y Garreta, moved the family to Paris, France. It became apparent at a young age that Fortuny was a talented artist, as he, too, showed a talent for painting. The family moved again in 1889 to Venice. As a young man, Fortuny traveled throughout Europe seeking out artists he admired, among them the German composer Richard Wagner. Fortuny became quite varied in his talents, some of them including painting, photography, sculpting, architecture, etching and even theatrical stage lighting. In 1897, he met the woman he would marry, Henriette Negrin, in Paris. He died in his home in Venice and was buried in the Campo Verano in Rome. His work was a source of inspiration to the French novelist Marcel Proust.
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