The church of San Francesco d’Assisi is one of the symbols of 19th-century neoclassical art in Sardinia, even if its initial structure was gothic. A small portion of this original façade survives, dating back to the 13th century. The church of San Francesco d’Assisi is located in the historic centre of Oristano, a short distance from the cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta (Il Duomo), officiated by the Franciscan friars who reside in the annexed monastery that dates back to 1253. The church was initially built in the same period before being demolished at the beginning of the 19th century and reconstructed a few decades later based on a project by the architect Gaetano Cima from Cagliari. The new place of worship was erected according to the canons of purist classicism, opening in 1847.
The façade is marked by three portals and preceded by a pronaos which imitates a Greek temple, consisting of two pillars and four columns with ionic capitals that support the tympanum. A hemispherical dome crowns the building. The interior has a central layout, interspersed with two chapels on each side, with a deep semi-circular apse. On the altar of the first chapel to the left is a masterpiece in wood to be admired – the polychrome Crucifix by Nicodemus (15th century).