St Martin’s church in Zillis houses a ceiling of figuratively painted panels dating back to the early 12th century. Its 153 panels are arranged in accordance with the principles of a medieval world map. The inner fields, i.e. the Continent, recount the Life of Jesus as well as the legends surrounding the titular saint of the church. The ceiling paintings in Zillis represent a monumental work of art from the High Middle Ages, which is linked, via the Bishop who commissioned them and the atelier which executed them, with cultural areas on both sides of the Alps. The paintings are an inexhaustible source of medieval art and culture but, first and foremost, they serve as a witness to the piety of those living in this distant era.
St Martin's Church in Zillis