A new beginning in Venice
We are excited to celebrate the new appointment of Venetian architect Alberto Torsello as Fortuny’s artistic director. Distinguished for his appreciation of context, complexity, heritage, and synthesis, Torsello’s creative vision fits right into the Fortuny universe, special in its contemporary approach to combining art and history into a total work of art that integrates every aspect of life from textiles to environments.
Torsello is renowned for his expertise in historic preservation. Practicing since 1994 and founding his studio TA Architettura in 2006, he quickly established himself as one of Venice’s leading architects, with a reputation for bringing together the conservation of culturally significant buildings with the design of exhibition spaces to promote their unique heritage. Among his many accomplishments, he executed architectural restorations for iconic places such as Palazzo Ducale, the Fondaco dei Tedeschi, and the Scuola Grande della Misericordia in Venice.
Torsello drew on this background with his design of the new Fortuny showroom, which is housed in a historic former convent converted a century ago into a textile factory that’s still active today. Throughout the showroom Torsello integrated the values of Fortuny’s visionary founder, Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo, who not only innovated luxury textile making for his couture fashions but was also a talented architect, inventor, painter, photographer, theater designer, lighting engineer, and set designer.
Like Mariano Fortuny, Torsello is a man of many talents. In addition to his expertise in conservation and restoration, he’s a celebrated inventor and industrial designer, having won the prestigious Compasso d’Oro award in 2018. For the showroom, Torsello designed a new patented system for textile display. With fabric rollers installed on the ceiling, it makes possible the lowering of textiles like a theater curtain, an homage to innovations Mariano Fortuny made to theater design and scenography in the early 20th century.