MMM Corones on Kronplatz – between the Gader Valley, Olang and the Puster Valley – is the final act in the Messner Mountain Museum project (which comprises a total of six facilities). On the edge of South Tyrol’s mountain plateau with the most spectacular views, in the unique museum architecture created by Zaha Hadid, I present the crowning of traditional mountaineering.
Kronplatz offers views beyond the borders of South Tyrol to all points of the compass: from the Lienz Dolomites in the east to the Ortler in the west, from the Marmolada in the south to the Zillertal Alps in the north. The museum is a mirror of the world of my childhood - the Geislerspitzen, the central buttress of the Heiligkreuzkofel (the most difficult climb in my whole life) and the glaciated granite mountains of the Ahrn Valley. On Kronplatz I present the development of modern mountaineering and 250 years of progress with regard to the equipment. I speak of triumphs and tragedies on the world’s most famous peaks – the Matterhorn, Cerro Torre, K2 – and the depiction of our activity, however contradictory it may seem. As in my other museums, I shed light on alpinism with the help of relics, thoughts, works of art (pictures and sculptures) and by reflecting the outside mountain backcloth in the interior of MMM Corones.
As the storyteller of traditional mountaineering, it is not my intention to judge or dramatise but simply to condense human experience of a world that is my world, of the 250-year-old contest between man and the mountain. The focus is not on sport and records but on people, on the key contributors to mountaineering, including philosophers and pioneers who had the courage to take the ‘golden step’ from the idea to the deed, disregarding the question “Why?”
“Corones” is the Ladin word for “crown”, like “Krone” in German. And Kronplatz – South Tyrol’s famous mountain for skiers and hikers and a perfect launchpad for hanggliders and paragliders – is now home to the crowning piece of my mountain museum project, a place of quiet where people can slow down and enjoy unforgettable views. It is a place of withdrawal that opens up the human senses for the above and beyond, where the mountains become an experiential space and a part of our culture. In mental flights beyond all summits, they are revealed anew. www.messner-mountain-museum.it