By Lisa Gong
An ongoing photo project exploring how Princeton students cultivate their own little private pieces of campus.
SIMON WU ’17
Hometown: Richboro, PA
Major: Art History
Certificate: Visual Arts (Graphic Design & Sculpture)
Activities: Breakout Princeton, Student Design Agency, Residential College Advisor
Dorm: Forbes College – Main Inn
Dorm Inspiration: I decorate it usually just with things that I’ve made and things other people have made that I like.
Elicits Strongest Memories: The bedsheet on the wall. I actually slept on this a lot as a kid with my family until we got too big, so now I use it as a tapestry.
Brings Most Joy: The poster I made for Junior Show, just because I made it the most recently. I particularly like the fact that the stickers make every poster unique.
No Longer Like: The tapestry from Zimbabwe. It makes me feel like an imperialist now, haha.
Dorm Style: Visual Comfort
LYDIA CORNETT ’16
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
Certificate: Visual Arts (Film)
Activities: Campus film productions, Princeton University Orchestra (Violin), Residential College Advisor
Dorm: Butler College – Bloomberg Hall
Dorm Inspiration: I wanted to be surrounded by memories of my favorite places! And by lots of lamps.
Elicits Strongest Memories: Two drawings of an elephant and a giraffe from Kenya. These are memories of an incredibly meaningful trip.
Brings Most Joy: Definitely a tie between my armchair and my lil baby coffee table.
No Longer Like: Those shot glasses by the window. They need to go.
Dorm Style: Warm. Cozy. Delicious.
KEVIN ZHANG ’16
Hometown: Ambler, PA
Major: Molecular Biology
Certificates: GHP, QCB, Engineering Biology
Activities: Botany Club, American Physician Scientists Association, Princeton Public Health Review
Dorm: Spelman Hall
Dorm Inspiration: I tend to have a lot of things in my room – lots of plants and fishtanks, books, medicines (as a hopeful future doctor, you have to have those!), posters, clothes. The most noticeable things in my room are the many plants and the fishtanks. Plants and fish have long been major hobbies for me, so it just makes sense for me to also keep them in my dorm!
The posters in my room also reflect my interests – I made a poster of Russian grammar to help me with Russian, which I’ve been studying for two and a half years, and I’ve also got a poster of Chicago, two Friends posters, and an awesome poster from ThermoFisher that fuses my interests in protein research with my interest in Russian (it’s actually perfect).
Elicits Strongest Memories: It’s not any of the plants or animals I have in my room, but rather the Chicago poster I have because I spent some of my favorite years of my life there.
Brings Most Joy: I have a small tank on my desk with a multicolored delta tail betta. There’s only one fish and a few snails, but my betta has a ton of personality and it’s fun to watch him as I work. He knows when it’s feeding time and recognizes me apart from feeding time, too.
No Longer Like: I bought a set of pipets on eBay (very cheap!) that I thought could be useful for some of the fishkeeping tasks that I have to do – a lot of the fertilizers and water conditioners I use are extremely concentrated, so measuring them by the μL can be pretty useful. In practice, however, I don’t bother to use the pipets, and they’re mostly just sitting in my room. Probably a bad impulsive buy.
Dorm Style: Very crowded but clean! It’s a little world of nature.
NATASHA MADORSKY ’17
Hometown: Cleveland, OH
Major: Near Eastern Studies
Activities: USG Diversity & Equity Committee, J Street U, Human Values Forum
Dorm: Scully Hall
Dorm Inspiration: I love traveling – it’s my motivation for doing everything I do. I’ve been able to travel a lot through Princeton, and as I travel, I like to collect a piece of what I saw in my experience.
Elicits Strongest Memories: Probably the collection of posters I have from all over the world. I like looking around at all the posters and seeing the places that I went. In contrast to the map where I just marked them, I like to see them in more of a creative and symbolic way. They remind me of the imagery and the environment that I was in when I traveled to these places, and it’s nice to have them take me back there when I look at them.
Brings Most Joy: The lighting. To me, that’s what makes it feel coziest and what I would say brings me the most joy.
No Longer Like: That’s a hard one because I feel like I would’ve gotten rid of it. I’m very good at throwing stuff out. I don’t have clutter. I’m not minimal; everything just has a purpose or a place.
Dorm Style: Cozy, a little girly, and international
MONICA GONZALEZ ’16
Hometown: New York City, NY
Activities: Pride Alliance, Forbes Dining Hall, friendship and compassion and love
Dorm: Whitman College – Fisher Hall
Dorm Inspiration: Freshman year, I bought a lot of watercolour prints with the money I made from working in the dining hall, and I still have most of them. Now they’re pretty much completely overshadowed by all these anime posters. The volleyball anime always makes me happy, though, so I don’t mind having the images from it everywhere.
Elicits Strongest Memories: I’ve had this super colourful bedsheet and duvet since freshman year. They’ve certainly been with me the longest since coming to Princeton and have seen me cry alone, as well as laugh with friends. I appreciate them a lot.
Brings Most Joy: My bike pump! I really got into cycling and bicycles and bicycle history when I came to Princeton. I took my bike everywhere and grew super attached to it, but I damaged it at the end of junior year and got a new bike that required this kind of pump. It’s a tool that lets me enjoy campus more freely and allows me to ride my bicycle safely, which brings me the most joy. I guess I also really appreciate the gesture of pumping up my bike whenever the air pressure in the tires is low as a reciprocation of the bumps to my moods my bike gives me when I go for a ride.
No Longer Like: I’m so glad my thesis is over. I learned a lot through books like these which I bought myself for the thesis, but I sort of never want to look at them ever again.
Dorm Style: My room is tastefully arranged trash, honestly.