Adrian Fortuin is a Johannesburg-based artist whose work explores the relationship between figuration and abstraction in the context of post-apartheid and post/de-colonial South Africa. Working in a range of media, the scope of which is informed by a primarily conceptual approach, Fortuin is interested in the limits of representation and the legacies of identity and experience connected to family, ancestry, community, and society more broadly. His work is strongly informed by the emancipatory potential of abstraction, and the role art can play in restitution, memorialising, and narrative-making.

Fortuin graduated from the Wits School of Arts with a Bachelor of Fine Art degree in 2020, and was the recipient of the Wits Young Artist Award and the Martienssen Prize in 2019. Since graduating, his practice has shifted from a performative and lens-based approach to a transmedia engagement with painting and drawing. His paintings are characterised by an obsessive process of revision, in which paintings are sedimented under newer paintings, so that the painted surface becomes an archive of thought and gestures and a metaphor for the endurance of personal historical traces in the present.

Fortuin is influenced by the work of South African artist Tracey Rose, who was his advisor at the Wits School of Arts, Moshekwa Langa, and Daisuke Yokota, as well as expressionist tendencies in African modernisms and postmodernisms. He has exhibited his work in group exhibitions in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Kampala, and the roaming African platform Boda Boda Lounge, and has in 2022 completed a short residency at the David Krut Print Workshop in Johannesburg.


  • 2022 Parallel Process (group show), David Krut Projects, in association with FORMS Gallery
  • 2022 This Bird Has Flown (solo), Artist Admin, Cape Town, in association with FORMS Gallery
  • 2022 Time is a Broken Umbrella (Group show), AVA Cape Town and KZNSA, Durban, in association with FORMS Gallery
  • 2019 Wits Young Artist Award exhibition (group show)
  • 2018 Boda-boda lounge (group show), Kampala.

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