Today’s birthday May 11th 1871 : Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo. Fortuny was most well known for his greek column style fashion, but he was actually versatile skilled.
Through his experiences with Wagner and the theatre, Fortuny became a lighting engineer, architect, inventor, director, and set designer. Fortuny’s greatest contribution to theatre was to theatrical lighting
He found that it was not the quantity of light but the quality of light that mattered. Fortuny constructed a dome out of plaster and cloth that backed the stage area with a gentle curve and overhung the stage
and found that when light was reflected off a different surface, it was possible to the change color and intensity.
Fortuny (stage) lamp (photo 1) and
The Fortuny Cyclorama dome (sketchbook photo 2) were his greatest contributions to theater and the entire lighting industry.
photo 2/3 : http://contessanally.blogspot.nl/2011/07/venice-ca-rezzonico-venice.html (photograph courtesy Museo Fortuny)