MURA, Francesco de
(b. 1696, Napoli, d. 1782, Napoli)
Italian painter. He was educated initially in the workshop of Domenico Viola at Naples, but in 1708 he entered the school of Francesco Solimena, whose favourite pupil and most trusted collaborator he became. At first he followed closely Solimena's monumental Baroque manner, as in the frescoes (1715) in S Nicola alla CaritÓ in Naples, but later developed a more controlled and refined style of rhythmical lines, light and airy colours and delicate psychological overtones. He employed this new style in his ten canvases of the Virtues and his vast Adoration of the Magi (all 1728; Naples, S Maria Donnaromita) and, above all, in his frescoes of the Adoration of the Magi in the apsidal dome of the church of the Nunziatella, Naples (1732; in situ). De Mura was also active as a portrait painter; his Portrait of the Artist's Wife (c. 1730; Naples, Pio Monte della Misericordia) and Self-portrait (c. 1730; Florence, Uffizi) are both very much in Solimena's manner.