Exploring the mountain’s fascination

When Robert Schauer asked me to contribute a text to this programme, I immediately wondered: Why me? Neither am I an experienced mountaineer, nor a nature explorer, and I live my passion for cinematography in front of a screen and not behind a camera or at an editing table. Thus, as a journalist, communication consultant and coach for corporate culture I reflected, in which form and what I could contribute from my view point.

Therefore, in my mind, I set off, to explore the mountains’ fascination in our everyday German language. We often use words from the mountain world in order to express our happiness. For example, we Germans say “das gibt mir Berge” (it “gives me mountains”) when we are enthusiastic about something.
However, we also encounter linguistic mountains when we use them as a symbol for great projects, when we talk about mountains of work, or about ominous burdens such as mountains of debts, which can hardly be discounted. We talk about rhetorical walks on a ridge, we criticize political roped-partners, and we admire ascendants, who already as the young make it to the top, with audacity and single mindedness. And although until now there has been no proof, we are rather convinced that faith is able to move mountains. Mountains are a symbol for something great, strong and eternal.

For a long time, cinematography has represented the true, authentic, vital. Meanwhile, sophisticated computer programs enable filmmakers to produce nearly every kind of simulation. Expeditions to remote galaxies, giant machines or superhuman beings – it is not anymore the human fantasy which defines the limits of what can be made, but the processing power, software and budgets of the animation studios. Nevertheless, it is particularly this virtual reality, which increases our admiration for the authenticity of nature films.

Real nature films make us aware that we are only guests on our planet, which we love to call “our earth”. Too easily we tend to forget that the total of the accessible firm crust of the earth, with all its oceans and continents, amounts to less than half a percent of its diameter. When mountains took over the natural power over the earth’s surface, life for man had not even been born for billions of years. And, who knows, how many billions of years mountains will outlast us…

The dimensions of the mountain world show us quite plainly and constantly our smallness. Therefore, the mountain film festival is the right platform for magnificent nature phenomena as well as a good place to become humble.

Heimo Lercher
Corporate Culture Consultant