Ötzi on Display
From the outset the government of the province of South Tyrol realized the importance of the find and – after several years of storage and research at the Institute of Anatomy of Innsbruck University – decided to display it to the public in a museum setting.
With regard to the public debate on whether the corpse should be buried on completion of the archaeological, anthropological and medical examinations, a decision was thus made in favour of conserving and exhibiting it.
The finding should be conserved as perfectly as possible for posterity while at the same time being made accessible to the interested public. Research work on the body should also continue.
The mummy itself is laid out nearly hidden from view in an apse-like darkened room and can be viewed through a window, past which visitors file.
The viewing window into Ötzi’s refrigerated cell measures just 40 x 40 cm due to conservational constraints. A larger opening would have resulted in excessive temperature fluctuations inside the cell.
At the same time the designers of the exhibition wanted to provide an intimate atmosphere for the mummy for ethical reasons.