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CMC Cribs: Behind Closed Dorms

November 20, 2009

by Cameron Hanson and Gloria Chang
CMC Cribs: Behind Closed Dorms

CMC may have a practical focus, but we know some of us take an extra effort to decorate our personal surroundings. Here’s a sneak peak into three dorm rooms we’re showcasing that make the most of their space.

Stencil Safari

The first thing that people notice when walking into junior Garrett Smith’s Benson single are his stencils inspired by the English graffiti artist Banksy. Despite his painted shelves, hand-made clock, and snazzy entertainment system, visitors only want to talk art. You actually made these stencils? How do you do it? What’s your inspiration?

From a young couple kissing to grenades to sunglasses, Garrett has captured the stencil aesthetic: "My favorite is probably the man with the umbrella. From the idea to the spray-painting, the entire process was my conception." His designs are fresh and colorful. With only a few simple forms, he’s able to capture the essence of his subjects.

Twinkle Twinkle, Art and Sparkle This double room is just above Stark Lab and its occupants frequently hear passers-by comment on its artwork and twinkle lights. The room certainly is eye-catching! Sophomore Meagan Biwer has meticulously placed every poster and photograph to exhibit her varied tastes. Her wall of art "reminds me that there's a life, an existence outside of my room and staying up till 2 am doing homework." She loves surrealist art and especially Salvador Dali-- of whom she has 4 prints on her wall.

Meagan has created a living space full of color and eye-candy, yet calming with its soft lighting and fine touches (such as the Tiffany lamp on her bedside table and the Dali-inspired clock).

Scandinavian Solstice The original inspiration for my own room is from Scandinavian design (note the birches tapestry which is actually a shower curtain, as well as the hand-made bulletin boards and pillows with a floral design – both are from the well known Finnish fabric designer Marimekko).

My rooms in the past have been jam-packed with museum postcards, magazine tear-outs, and other art posters that I’ve collected. But this year I tried to take a step back and leave some white space on the walls.

By wrapping a yellow roll of paper around the room, I’m able to bring in different design elements for a cohesive whole. Nature, bold colors, and modern art are the other forces guiding my décor. From my Warhol-esque digital prints of my friends and silk-screens of Atticus Finch (done for a Civ10 project), to my own photography, 3-D shadow boxes, and collages, I’m proud of how my room reflects me. I have invested a lot of time to each design detail but most everything was done on a tight budget.

An aesthetically pleasing room is a must for my survival at CMC. And the cherry on top is my scenic view overlooking Parents Field and the mountains.

To view larger photos and extra photos, check out the CMC Dorms & Décor Flickr account.

Know about an awesome room that we could feature (not necessarily relating to art)? Yours or a friend’s? Any suggestions? Feel free to send us (that’s Cameron and Gloria!) any and all ideas about dorm room design at or

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