Although pictorial representations of the birth of Jesus have been known since the 4th century, St. Francis of Assisi is considered the « father » of the manger as we know it. The story has it, that he built a manger in a forest at Christmas time in 1223, where he gave his famous Christmas Sermon in front of a real ox and ass and many listeners.
Today, at Christmas time every church and many living rooms are decorated with a manger. Since then we can look back on a long tradition of wood hand-carved nativity figures. Especially at the wood sculptors and pipe makers Kemperling in Mattsee, where the pretty figures are manufactured since 1834. The wood comes in large part from local forests and has to be dried for years before it has reached the perfect condition to be carved.
Until the 6th of January 2016 one can admire some of the most beautiful mongers manufactured by Kemperling in an evocative exhibition at the Erlebniswelt fahr(T)raum.