All Articles & News

Museums, Product News, History Museum

Custom Museum Storage Cabinets

Reconfigurable Interiors for a Changing Collection

September 17th, 2020 - less than a minute read

The biggest challenge in planning a collections area is usually dealing with future uncertainty: How will collections grow over time? Could collecting priorities shift in a few years? Will we ever get more room to expand collections storage?

Staff at the Frazier Museum in Louisville, Kentucky, faced some of those questions as well.

Want to learn more?

Download the full case study!

A Cramped Collections Area

Housed in a former tobacco warehouse that was built in 1898, the Frazier Museum has shifted focus over the past couple of decades. As a result, its collecting priorities and its collections have changed.

What hasn’t changed are the architectural constraints in the museum’s collections storage area. Large structural columns break up the space. Ductwork drops down from the low ceiling. In the past, inefficient static shelving filled the area. Staff knew something needed to be done to improve the space and add capacity, while still maintaining convenient access to all the objects in the collection.

museum cabinet fit under ductwork

Custom cabinets and shelving units were designed to fit under ductwork.

reconfigurable museum cabinets

The interior of the Spacesaver 920 Series can be reconfigured in the future.

art rack structural columns

Art racks with custom mounts are attached to the structural columns.

Custom Museum Storage Cabinets Optimize Space

To optimize space throughout the collections area, museum staff worked with the local Spacesaver consultant to design cabinets, art racks, and a high-density mobile system that work around the basement’s space limitations.

viking metal museum cabinet

Because the museum’s collections will continue to grow and change, the project team selected Spacesaver 920: Series Preservation Cabinet with reconfigurable interiors. The custom museum storage cabinets are currently fitted with drawers, but in the future the drawers could be swapped out for hanging rods, trays, or other accessories.

art rack hanging storage

Cabinets and shelving are mounted on mobile “carriages” and were designed to fit perfectly under protruding ductwork. One of the cabinets is also narrower than the others to allow it to fit in limited space. Art racks with custom mounts are attached to the structural columns, turning unused space into storage for framed art.

Designed for Future Flexibility

The new collections equipment is a vast improvement over the cramped shelving that previously filled the space. Every object in the collection now has a home, and staff also have room to store shipping and conservation supplies right where they’re needed.

Best of all, the room provides future flexibility. With reconfigurable cabinets and room to add new cabinets and shelving as the collection grows, the museum will be able to pursue its mission for years to come.

Next Up in Museums

Spacesaver Storage Solved
May 23rd 2024 - 2 min read

Storage solutions for preserving historical artifacts in limited spaces.

Read On
Spacesaver Storage Solved
March 27th 2024 - 2 min read

Spacesaver understands some things must be seen to believe.

Read On
Spacesaver Storage Solved
March 19th 2024 - 7 min read

How the right storage solutions can help mitigate damage and preserve history.

Read On
Spacesaver Storage Solved
June 30th 2023 - 3 min read

The museum market, a half year in review.

Read On