The beautiful Bruneck Castle in Northern Italy has been transformed by EM2 architecture into a new branch of the Messner Mountain Museum. Originally built by a bishop during Medieval times, the castle's interior has received an overhaul complete with new rooms constructed of period - appropriate unfinished timber. The museum is the brainchild of mountaineer Reinhold Messner, who has created a series of museums that highlight the culture of people who live in mountainous regions around the world.
Development on the project started in 2008, and since then EM2 has focused on restoring the castle’s façade and interior while creating a fine exhibition space. The architects constructed most of the renovations from wood – a material that would not disturb the architectural integrity of the building and can be easily removed when the exhibition ends in the future.
Massive wooden stairways were built to connect the floors of the Bergfried Tower to various antechambers. Wooden flooring was also installed over the castle’s traditional stone floors. On top of the tower, visitors can catch a breathtaking view of the surrounding snow-capped Zillertal Alps.
Several wings of extensions were built from unfinished wood as well – these areas house more exhibitions while echoing the common materials used during the castle’s construction in Medieval times. Meanwhile an elevator is a modern addition that serves disabled guests.
Reinhold Messner is a mountaineer and a cultural anthropologist that studies mountain people around the globe. His museums focus on educating visitors on glaciers, rock climbing, mythical mountain history, and the history of mountain people.
All photos © Harald Wisthaler