Art and History in Forni di Sopra

A 778 A.D. document bears witness to the existence of one of the two Forni, but it does not say which one exactly. Till 1337 Forni di Sopra church was under Forni di Sotto authority, and only in 1455 the parish of Santa Maria Assunta was established in Forni di Sopra. The name "Forni Savorgnani" comes from Ettore Savorgano, who, in 1326, bought the jurisdiction of the two villages.

The churches in Forni di Sopra keep precious artistic and architectural evidences, characterized first of all by the presence of wood, often richly carved, which well harmonize with the other local buildings. Sacred buildings are spread all over the three main hamlets of Andrazza, Cella and Vico.

In Andrazza, the XVII-century Church of San Vito (rebuilt in 1742) still preserve a XVII-century wooden altar, made in the Gemona workshop of the Comuzzi, with the statues of the Saints Vito, Modesto and Crescenza

Also in Cella in the parish church, dedicated to Santa Maria Assunta, and built between 1835 and 1840, you can admire some precious wooden altars of the School of the Comuzzi. Among those, the one by Domenico da Tolmezzo, dated at the end of the XV century, is certainly worth seeing. The ten wooden statues, in the baroque style represent the saints Mauro, Gregorio Magno, Lorenzo, Vito, Sebastiano, Giovanni Battista, Giacomo Maggiore, Rocco and Christ with the Angels and the Madonna with the Child. The church is further embellished by several frescoes, among which those by the Venetian Francesco Micolini and the Udinese Fred Pittino stands out, by the stoney baptistery dated 1584.
A few metres away from the parish church there is the evocative votive church of San Floriano, patron saint against fires, and for that reason very worshipped in Carnia, where in the past fires had destroyed whole villages, because of the typical straw or wooden roofs of the houses. This material, typical of the Alpine area, still covers the little fifteenth-century church of San Floriano. The chuch was built on a rectangular plan, and is enriched by a cycle of frescoes of the Four Doctors of the Church and Saints, painted by the sixteenth-century artist Gianfrancesco Del Zotto, called "Da Tolmezzo". However, the most precious picture is the polyptych by Andrea di Bortolotto, called Bellunello, who portrayed San Floriano with a burning castle on his hands in 1480  (as the legend tells the saint made the miracle of putting out a fire on a whole town). This building has been considered National Monument thanks to its architectural characteristics and the precious works it keeps.

In Vico there are two churches. The first one is dedicated to the Madonna della Salute, and was built in 1852. It keeps a precious fresco of the Holy Virgin, moved from a sacellum of 1515, and dedicated to titolo salutis, i.e. it invoked protection from the plague. Inside you can admire the frescoes by Giovanni Moro, made in 1939.
The second church is dedicated to Saint James Apostle. The oldest part of this building, sober and essential, goes back to 1461, as it is inscribed in the gothic door. Inside a ruined fresco of the fifteenth century, representing the head of an Apostle, is preserved.