Octopus Initiative at the MCA Denver is an immersive architecture exhibit designed and built by Hunter Leggitt Studio. Visitors interact with the installation on a daily basis.

MCA DENVER Octopus Initiative Exhibit

Denver, CO | Immersive Exhibit Design & Build

The Octopus Initiative at the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (MCA Denver) is an immersive architecture exhibit designed and built by Hunter Leggitt Studio. This exciting and unique art share library concept is home to a collection of approximately 400 pieces of artwork commissioned from local artists. Each piece of artwork is available to be checked out by the general public and hung in private homes for free and up to a year. This permanent exhibit is the first official project of the museum’s 10-year anniversary renovation campaign.

Replacing the museum’s previous Open Shelf Library, the studio designed and fabricated custom art storage display units out of steel and glass for visitors to efficiently and playfully interact with the art collection. Custom inlaid walnut cabinets serve as a textural backdrop and house over 200 carrying cases for each individual piece of art. Interactive display kiosks allow visitors to quickly access the entire collection and sign up for the lending lottery.

In the first year alone, it is estimated that over 100,000 visitors have interacted with the exhibit.

Design and Project Management- Hunter Leggitt Studio
Fabrication & Installation | custom cabinetry - Vonmod
Fabrication & Installation | custom steel racks - Bonnie Gregory
Lighting Design - i5 Lighting Collaborative

Photos: Jess Bernstein Photography


The Octopus Initiative custom art storage displays and inlaid walnut cabinetry
Museum attendees interactive with the Octopus Initiative art storage panels in order to view the library’s collection. With over 400 pieces of artwork in the collection, the goal of the design is to be efficient while providing a timeless modern exhibit for the museum.
For me the challenge was to design something that respects the existing space and respects the museum, but gives it a new aesthetic and functional feel - one that’s more playful, engaging, and interactive, to draw people in.
— Hunter Leggitt | Modern in Denver Interview
Conceptual rendering of the Octopus Initiative by Hunter Leggitt Studio
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