Wearing a Fortuny® manteau or dress is something different. That is what Marcel Proust described beautifully in his book À la recherche du temps perdu, where he wrote „The Fortuny gown which Albertine was wearing that evening seemed to me the tempting phantom of that invisible Venice.”
It is true; wearing a manteau you seem to melt into this fascinating lagoon city, and wearing the same piece elsewhere you take a piece of Venice with you.
This week we met Lino Lando, a native Venetian art connoisseur and restaurateur, and his wife, the well-known journalist Petra Reski, for dinner at his restaurant, Antico Martini, next to the old Teatro la Fenice in Venice. Lino Lando is the founder and owner of Fortuny®, the company he created to bring Mariano Fortuny’s ingenious inventions back to life.
Fortuny was originally founded in 1907 by Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo. Fortuny was a Spanish-born designer who settled in Venice, where he set up a workshop and began experimenting with different textile dyeing and printing techniques. Mariano Fortuny was also an innovative artist, inventor and designer who had a significant influence not only on the textile industry, but also on stage equipment for theatres and opera houses in Europe (he invented the dimmer for example). His textiles were renowned for their rich colours, intricate patterns and beautiful designs created using his unique printing process.
Fortuny’s lamps were also highly sought after, with intricate metalwork and hand-painted silk shades that created a warm and inviting atmosphere. Today, Fortuny® dresses and lamps continue to be coveted by designers and collectors alike, with each piece representing a beautiful blend of art and functionality that is both timeless and unique.
Mariano Fortuny rebelled against the style lines that were popular at the time and he and his wife Henriette created the Delphos dress, an icon of fashion and design: a shift dress of finely pleated silk weighted down with glass beads that held its shape and flowed on the body. The pleats he used were all made by hand, and no one has been able to recreate pleats as fine as his, or hold their shape as well as his dresses have for many years. Until now.
In 1984, Lino Lando gave up his jobs as a photographer and art dealer to devote himself entirely to his passion. He wanted to recreate Fortuny’s sophisticated textile dreams that had been forgotten. How should the pleats be laid so that they fall correctly and do not lose their tension? Which lamp silk is so transparent that it conjures up this magical light? And what colours are used to paint it? Today, even experts cannot tell the difference between Fortuny originals and “Fortuny®” products.
Under Lando’s leadership, Fortuny® has undergone a significant transformation. The brand has expanded its offering beyond its signature textiles to include a range of products including apparel, accessories and home lighting. The precious artistic heritage is protected by the Fortuny® international trademark.
One of the key aspects of Fortuny®’s success is its commitment to quality. Each piece is carefully crafted using the highest quality materials and techniques, ensuring that each product is unique and of the highest quality. The textile clothing accessories are created using a combination of hand printing and dyeing techniques, with each piece taking several days to complete..
Another aspect of Fortuny’®s success is its focus on sustainability. Lando has implemented environmentally friendly practices throughout the production process, from sourcing materials to packaging and shipping. The company also supports local artisans and businesses, helping to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Venetian economy.
Looking to the future, Lino Lando has ambitious plans for Fortuny® . He hopes to further expand the brand’s offering, while remaining true to its heritage and commitment to quality and sustainability. After Venice and Paris, he has now also opened his first shop in Germany, in Munich.
Here you can immerse yourself in the world of Fortuny® products. With Lando’s vision and leadership, Fortuny® is poised to become one of the most iconic and sought-after luxury brands in the world, still manufacturing in Venice and privately owned.
If you would like to join us for an evening aperitif on 29 March at Fortuny’s Munich store, please email email@example.com .
We will take you into the Venetian spirit and you are welcome to try on, style or add your favourite Fortuny® piece to your spring wardrobe.