Born in 1946 in Rome, Franco Fortunato is formed artistically self-taught, following a study of scientific orientation.
His artistic training took shape with the study of Italian painting of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, such as Flemish, but also some American of the early twentieth century, and even from Europe, for linearity and figurative purity and design, synthesis and rigor in a context of geometric fantastic surreal and metaphysical.
After his first experiences as a youth, in the seventies he began to exhibit with the “Gruppo Figurale il Babuino”, participating in the great exhibition dedicated to Pier Paolo Pasolini in 1976 designed by himself, group from which he is then detached in search of his own language and a complete autonomy of action.
It is at this moment that he created his particular method of working in “cycles”: Storie del parco (Park’s Stories) to the Barboni (Homeless) that he painted between 1980 and 1985, the Racconti per l’Europa (Stories for Europe) in 1992, dedicated to the nascent European Union and the twelve founding countries. In 1994, he addressed the issue of Pinocchio, first cycle based on the novel, which continued in 2004. It is no coincidence that scenes from Pinocchio already appear in the cycle of Racconti per l’Europa, in which they represent Italy, one of the twelve founding members. For the artist, in fact Collodi’s masterpiece is a large fresco of this country, with its poverty and misery, corruption; and Pinocchio so it is not a fairy tale but a document and a cross-section of its society, not yet fully exceeded.
He continued, in the Nineties, with Inventario (Inventory) and Città invisibili (Invisible Cities), cycle dedicated to a reading of Italo Calvino; then with Ritrovamenti (Discoveries) and Città ritrovate (Rediscovered Cities).
Underlying temporally and thematically is always the figure of the Vagabondo (Wanderer), a poetic figure that crosses almost continuously throughout the artistic career of Fortunato. A character who appears in 1980 and live his own existence dressing various guises and experiencing many different issues.
In 2000 he returned to literary themes addressing the cycle dedicated to Il Piccolo Principe (the Little Prince), the masterpiece of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, while in 2003 are still the architectures that had attracted him with the cycle Architetture fantastiche (Imaginary Architecture).
In 2005 he produced the important cycle of Moby Dick presented in a long tour of exhibitions, from Rocca Aldobrandesca of Piancastagnaio, to various cities and locations. Then he implemented Storie di Mari (Seas’ Stories).
Every cycles accompanied by as many exhibitions in Italy and abroad: Switzerland, France, Belgium, Spain, Argentina, Holland, Great Britain, USA, Germany, Canada.
He has made several murals on public and private buildings. Among these should be mentioned theVia Matris Gloriosae, in the church of Santa Maria Maggiore in Caramanico Terme.
His work is also being developed in the field of graphic design, sculpture and ceramics.
Santa Caterina d’Oro Prize for Contemporary Art, 2010 edition.
He realized the Drappellone of the Palio di Siena of August 2010, in addition to various others .
The second half of 2012 was dedicated to the realization of the scenes for Il Corsaro by Giuseppe Verdi, staged at the Teatro Verdi in Trieste in January 2013, the year of the bicentennial of Verdi, under the guidance of Maestro Gianluigi Gelmetti.
2013 was the year of The Magic Flute of W.A.Mozart.
In 2014 was among the protagonists of the show The Popes of the People, conceived and staged at the Auditorium della Conciliazione in Rome, for the beatification of the two Popes.
At the end of 2014 , during the exhibition Piccoli segreti (Little Secrets) in Rome, he presented his first works inspired by the story of the sinking of the Venetian ship Querina that occurred in 1430/31 , starting then a new cycle: La storia della Querina (the Querina Story).
In 2015 he showed his first exhibition of ceramics in Rome, Smalti (Glazed).
In 2016 he began the series on the history of Cocca Querina with the exhibition (La Storia della Querina) of paintigns, ceramics, drawings and an experimental short movie at the Palazzo della Cancelleria in Rome, works that has been presented in Bergen
(Norway) during the Hanseatic Days, then continue his tour, first in Venise in 2017 in the Consiglio Regionale del Veneto’ halls. In 2018 will be the turn of the Mole Vanvitelliana in Ancona, with a new series of works.