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DENfiles: Covering Up Construction…Or Conspiracy?

Caitlin Vassallo

DENfiles: Covering Up Construction…Or Conspiracy?

In 2018, Denver International Airport (DEN) formally kicked off what they’re calling the Great Hall construction project. But with the airport’s conspiracy-packed past, we can’t help but be curious as to what those iconic white peaks over DEN are hiding.

Over the course of DEN’s lifetime, it has been no stranger to outsider speculation. The airport’s proclivity for unique decor—such as the gravely misunderstood murals or gargoyles watching over baggage claim—have not exactly aided in the cause. As a result of the airport’s distinctive attributes, many have conjured that, shrouded by the walls of DEN, are secret Freemason meeting spaces, a Lizard King’s den, even hidden tunnels. And these are just a handful of the many vibrant conspiracy theories that have emerged over the airports near 25-year existence. DEN decided that it’s high time to address these theories head on, and expose their own secrets in an elaborate campaign playfully dubbed “The DEN Files”. 

Karsh Hagan was charged with crafting a series of advertisements, designed to “not just catch your attention” but make you stop and think. We started by selecting some of DEN’s more memorable totems (think Blucifer) to serve as the face of the campaign, and crafting juxtaposing messages to drive viewers to stop, think, and cross-examine their own perception of fantasy versus fact. 

News outlets locally, nationally,  and even across the globe have caught wind of the quirky, quippy campaign and created their own theories for what exactly is going on. But here is the honest-to-goodness truth...Brace yourself:

For the duration of the next year, DEN will be adorned with conspiracy-related signage that also provides travelers with some insight into what’s really going on behind those walls: Construction, plain and simple. The results of which promise to be great, in every sense of the word. The Great Hall will feature streamlined security, more room to relax, new concessions and much more. And the creepy-cool creative will hint at all of these updates, utilizing previously unleveraged conspiracy imagery paired with thoughtful copy designed to raise eyebrows.

Learn more about the project, get a sneak peek of our work and find out if DEN is really making more space, or if they’re making more secrets. 


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