SIMON MESSNER joins the SALEWA athletes team

Simon, the 28-year-old son of Reinhold Messner, is Salewa's most recent purchase

09 October 2019
In Venice, Simon Messner spoke on the occasion of the presentation of BIVACCO at the Art Biennale. Interviewed by Climbing Radio Simon has released several statements, both on the art project and on his sale in the Salewa team.

Simon Messner is a "latecomer", as he calls himself. He started climbing and mountaineering at the age of 16. Perhaps, as he says today, this can be attributed to his family environment, "The mountain theme - he remembers - has always been very present in our family. It was an almost daily topic and therefore too natural to be interesting for me ”. But the situation changed rapidly when he discovered mountaineering and climbing. So far he has been able to repeat many rock and ice routes and make his first ascents in Oman, Jordan, Pakistan, the Alps and his home mountains, the Dolomites.

"I don't feel like an athlete. I consider myself 50% a mountaineer and 50% a film maker, but above all a mountain person - explains Simon - With Salewa I feel at ease, because it is a company composed of mountaineers and mountain people like me, who know what is needed in the mountains. In particular, from Salewa I appreciated the commitment to sustainability and the Tyrolean sheep wool recycling project. I take care of two farms owned by my father and therefore I know the difficulties of mountain farmers and breeders. The farm where we make wine is supported economically, but the mountain one where we raise sheep is very difficult to maintain. So I really like Salewa's idea of ​​working with the Tyrolean sheep's wool in our region, because it offers an opportunity for mountain breeders. "

For Simon the style is at least as important as climbing itself. It leaves as less material as possible and prefers to travel in remote areas and paths. For him this is the key to a successful shipment. A mountaineering philosophy to which the South Tyrolean company is also sensitive.

"Salewa is a mountain company that thinks in terms of generations - explains Stefan Rainer, general manager of the South Tyrolean brand - In our history the relationship with the Messner family has an important place. Salewa and Reinhold Messner have actively collaborated in the development of materials for his first expeditions. So today I am very happy that Simon has decided to join us to help us understand and develop the new expression of mountaineering for his generation. "

The official presentation of Simon Messner took place in an unusual place, on the Island of San Servolo in Venice. The occasion was the conference organized to show the press Bivacco, a project of the ArtintheAlps association. Designed by the artist Hannes Egger on the centenary of the Saint-Germain treaty, which divided Tyrol by attributing Alto Adige and Trentino to Italy, the project obtained the use of the bivouac named after Günther Messner, which Reinhold had built in 1972 to commemorate his missing brother on Nanga Parbat.

The artifact was first transported to Lana to be restored by the same craftsman who had built it 50 years ago, and then transferred to the island of San Servolo to coincide with the Venice Art Biennale, to house the works of seven South Tyrolean artists who have interpreted the theme reflecting on the dual physical and representative theme of the bivouac.

The first level is the physical one, with works designed to interact with the architecture, the materials, the function and the limited space of the physical structure of the bivouac, to complete or redefine it. The second level is the representative one, that is the meanings that Bivacco wants to communicate, as a refuge and a place of passage, of reception, of exchange, of overcoming borders. A place without a key, always open, where unknown people meet to find ways to interact even beyond their limits. A place where unexpected alliances have formed between climbers, where some have spent the night before memorable climbs, and others have spent their last night.

The meeting in San Servolo was also the first time that Simon was able to see the bivouac named after his uncle Günther in the new temporary location, complete with the seven artistic works.

"When they first spoke to me about this project a year ago, I thought it was a very nice idea - explains Simon - but also that it was very difficult for it to be realized. It is very nice for me to be here today and see how in the end everything is together. "

In early October Bivacco went on a further journey to Bolzano, where it can be visited in front of the Salewa headquarters before reaching its final destination at Plan de Corones.

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