Collection: Delores Fortuna

Galena, IL

Delores Fortuna began her life on a dairy farm in northern Wisconsin. At 14 months, she contracted polio, and after rehab, eight orthopedic operations, braces, and crutches, she overcame paralysis by age 16. When she was introduced to wheel throwing in college, Fortuna was able to physically understand the pleasures of moving without pain through her hands’ interaction with the spinning clay. She received her BFA and MFA in ceramics from the University of Chicago where she studied under Ruth Duckworth. She then went on to teach at Antioch University, St. Xavier University, Chicago, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago before retiring in 2015 to her own studio practice. She enjoys the scientific nature of ceramics and formulates her own porcelain clay body and glazes. Her work continues to involve the gestural movement she initially fell in love with. Through layering historical context, natural colors, and her experiences, Fortuna reimagines the staples of everyday use.