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MIT blogger Ankita D. '23

Murals of Burton-Conner by Ankita D. '23

long live BC

I’m a proud resident of Burton-Conner, a lovely dorm with nine floors of varying cultures. The dorm is being renovated starting next year, and although I’ll [hopefully]01 I really don't know how the COVID-19 crisis will influence the renewal, but.. be moving back in as a senior, the dorm won’t be the same. Some of the modifications that are being made are ones students have been advocating for for years—namely, windows that don’t scream whenever it gets even the slightest bit windy—but one of the most noticeable changes will be the freshly painted-over walls. Each floor of BC has a number of murals that are important to floor culture, so this is pretty tragic.

Thankfully, efforts to preserve the murals are being made. Each floor tagged and documented its murals this semester, and high-definition photos will be taken so that the murals may be restored. Also, sliding wall panels for students to paint on, which were piloted in Next House, will also be implemented in the new Burton-Conner. It’s not ideal, but it’s something.

So, yes, BC isn’t being torn down forever, and there’s a good chance that most of its culture can be restored, but this renovation is still impactful on each of the dorm’s living communities. And that’s why I’d like to showcase/preserve some of its culture within this post!

 

Burton 1

Spaceman Spiff Stairwell Mural, by Rob Stokes and Meg Golden ’97

burton 1 stairwell mural

I was curious about this mural, so I reached out to its two creators. Rob told me that before Spaceman Spiff, the B1 mural was the blue flying glove from the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine. It kind of small and a bit before their time, so they decided to create something more grand to welcome people to the floor, given that most B1 residents use the stairs.

At this point in time, B1 didn’t have a well-established floor personality, so they decided to run with a comic book theme that was in line with a previous mural. Rob loves Calvin and Hobbes, so he championed the idea of a related concept, and the floor settled on Spaceman Spiff planting the B1 flag. Rob visited a few years ago and was happy to see not only that the mural is still intact, but that the floor has embraced the cartoon theme over the years.

 

Hookup Graph

hookup graph

 

Surrealism commentary on female sexuality, by Sammi Cheung ’22

Surrealism commentary on female sexuality by Sammi Cheung '22

 

World Map, by Mina Healy ’15

World Map by Mina Healy '15

This mural documents where everyone on the floor is from!

 

Burton 2

Stairwell Mural

burton two peanut gallery

 

Grid collection of about 20 small paintings in GRA apartment

20 paintings mural

A very cute collection of paintings completed this semester (Spring ‘20) by 20 different people! The ones at the bottom are by the daughters of the Heads of House.

 

Jake the Dog and Finn the Human

Jake the Dog and Finn the Human

 

What Is Love?

what is love mural

 

Burton 3rd

My floor! I’ve talked about it in great detail on the blogs because I love it so damn much. We’re called the Bombers, which explains the prevalence of bombs in these murals.

 

Insignia Stairwell Mural, designed by Elvie Stephanopolous ’07

btb insignia

a btb “insignia” comm.prod

 

The Persistence of Burton Third, by Heather Nelson ’20

persistence of burton 3rd

 

Son of Bomber, by Karen Dubbin ’12 and Ian Rust ’10

son of bomber

 

DTYD XLV Mural

DTYD mural

We have a couple of murals dedicated to our DTYD parties (read more about them here), but this is arguably one of the most striking ones.

 

The Burton Third Bananas

the burton third bananas mural

A Velvet Underground reference :)

Burton 4

Known as the Players!

Lobsters mimicking the Beatles’ album cover, by Andrew Xue ’21, Alice Zhang ’21, Sophia Chen ’23, Nathan Liang ’21

beatles lobsters

The backstory: they saw a similar mural on the wall of a lobster restaurant in Maine and decided to put their own B4 spin on it.

 

Burton 4 Handprint Wall

Burton 4 Handprint Wall

This has the handprint of everyone who’s ever lived on B4.

 

Poker-Themed Hallway, by Nathan Liang, Ella Richards, Shannon Cassady, Sophie Herscovici, Sophie Anderson, Anna Kooperberg, Andrew Xue (21’s) and Laura Li, Jamie Rich (20’s)

poker elevatorpoker hallway 2 poker-themed hallway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A poker-themed hallway mural featuring “Burton 4” right when you leave the elevator, a Las Vegas-esque sign, playing cards, a poker table, and a roulette table.

Burton 5

Stairwell Mural

burton 5 stairwell mural

 

Elevator Mural, by S. Southerland ’12, L. Matloff ’13, M. Alba, C. Strong circa 2012

elevator mural

 

B5 mural

 

boston mural

 

this is fine mural

don’t stress: just remember

Conner 2

This floor is known as the British floor. Find out why in this post!

 

Comic Strip Mural, located in 223 suite

c2 mural

The story behind this one is interesting…legend has it that someone painted it because they were mad at hearing their suitemate having sex all the time…the clam in the comic, allegedly, is the suitemate and his girlfriend because they’re conjoined. LMAO

 

Banksy draws the Queen as Ziggy Stardust

queen mural

 

 

big ben mural

🅱️ig 🅱️en

Conner 3

The Irish floor!02 no potato famine

 

Get Lucky

get lucky mural

Located right outside the Connorside elevator, this mural is the floor’s most iconic.

 

Stormtrooper

stormtrooper

 

Just Missed My Crush

just missed my crush mural

 

For All That We Hoped For

for all that we hoped for mural

Conner 4

The pirates!

Pirate Logo, located outside floor lounge

c4 pirates mural

 

C5 Portal

portal to c5 mural

A “portal” to C5, located outside the up-down suite. C5 has its own portal on its floor.

 

Crab With Top Hat, by Emma Tolley ’11

crab with top hat mural

 

Pi-rates

"pi" rate mural

transcendental…

The good ol’ MIT touch…

 

Cool Squirtle

squirtle

Conner 5

For a bit of context, this floor likes hockey and is dinosaur-themed :)

Astronaut on a rocky planet, by Greta Farrell ’18, Clio Macrakis ’18, Colin Poler ’18, Andrea Li ’18

space mural

This mural is based off a NASA work. I reached out to the artists to ask about it and was told by Colin that it was started in January 2018 and finished on June 9, the day after his commencement. For an interesting bit of trivia, the floor had a space-themed cocktail party on April 28 to celebrate the mural being recognizable. Also, everyone had different opinions about which colors were red vs purple vs pink, leading to the term “pedurple.” cute!

 

Ice Skating Dino, by Lexi Schneider ’21, Andrea Li ’18

dinosaur skating

 

Exercise…Some Motivation Required

exercise mural

The subject of the C4 portal.

 

Hamilton: How lucky we are to be alive right now, by Ria Das ’21, Lexi Schneider ’21, Andrea Li ’18

hamiltonmural

The story behind this one is exactly what you’d expect: the floor became obsessed with Hamilton and wanted to give it a tribute.

 

Paris, by Athena Sánchez ’23 (sadly unfinished due to the events of this semester)

paris mural

 

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse of Burton-Conner’s many floor cultures!

@prefrosh: come live here when the dorm reopens in 2022 uwu

 

  1. back to text
  2. no potato famine back to text