This is the first-ever scholarly publication devoted to the art of Francesco de Mura (1696 1782), one of the greatest painters of the Golden Age of Naples.
De Mura, the favourite of the Bourbon King Charles VII, was the chief painter of decorative cycles to emerge from the studio of Francesco Solimena (1657 1747), the famous Baroque artist.
De Mura's refined and elegant compositions, with their exquisite light and colouring, heralded the rococo in Naples, and his later style was a precursor of Neo- Classicism.
His ceiling frescoes rivalled those of his celebrated Venetian contemporary, Giambattista Tiepolo (1696 1770).
Yet, today, De Mura lacks his proper place in the history of art.
Author Arthur Blumenthal argues that this is because nearly a third of De Mura's work was lost during World War II, including, most tragically his crowning achievement, a series of frescos at the abbey of Monte Cassino.
It is now time to re-evaluate this once celebrated artist. AUTHOR: Arthur R. Blumenthal is director emeritus of Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College Nicola Spinosa is director of the Capodimonte Museum Naples and former Superintendent of the National Museums in Naples David Nolta is professor in History of Art at Massachusetts College of Art and Design Maria Grazia Leonetti Rodino is governor of the Pio Monte della Misericordia Loredana Gazzara is governor of the Office Picture Gallery and Historical Archive, Pio Monte della Misericordia. 110 colour illustrations