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In Defense of… The Vag Color Scheme

In our latest installment of “In Defense Of…”, Nikhita Mahtani takes on the haters of The Nexus/Vagelos Center/Diana’s new color scheme.

Barnard’s new student center has been in the making for a long time now. Every semester, Barnard students wait for the incessant banging in the Quad to stop and the walkway between Altschul and Milbank to open, so they can sleep in for five more minutes every morning. Finally, the wait is over, and the inappropriately nicknamed Vag has started showing some signs of completion. But Barnard students are far from happy. 

Unlike the picturesque Alfred Lerner Hall, with its big glass windows and neutral colors, the Vag decides to be a bit more… well, unique in its approach. According to the renderings on Barnard’s website, the Vag will have dull peach/orange colored windows, and the inside will have a multitude of red and orange chairs to ‘complement’ the outside. A mixture of dull and bright reds, coupled with the bright yellow tube lights they have decided to put in, will definitely give all Barnard students the vision of entering the 70’s, complete with hip colors and groovy disco ball themed effects. Not something you want when entering a student center… or is it?

Yes, the colors might be too much and the lighting might be too strong, but the Vag has something that Lerner doesn’t – a personality. For students trying to study at the Vag, falling asleep will be just about impossible; there’s simply no way you could drift into dreamland with those bright lights and colors staring at you in the face.  Imagine how much money you’ll save on coffee and Red Bull!

Plus, the Vag’s garish appearance will make it stand out to all manner of passersby.  No more will you have to worry about Barnard being unnoticed, BC students – you can’t miss that campus with the big red building overlooking Broadway, especially when it’s opposite those dreary, (gasp!) gray Columbia buildings.  How unoriginal, no?  Naturally, whether this attention will be good has yet to be determined, but let’s take what we can get; we can surely all agree that there’s truly nothing that catches the eye like the stately combination of orange, peach, and red.

Finally, however odd or mismatched it may seem, the Vag does at least one thing right with its color scheme. Yes, its chairs are extremely red, and yes, it is generally way too bright. But consider this – at least it isn’t pink. Think of a women’s college, and what color patterns come to mind?  Feminine ones, like pale lavender or bright pink, of course. We have to hand it to the Vag for stepping bravely away from this stereotype, instead giving us a bright, cheerful gathering place that’s equally appealing (or offensive) to all genders. Sure, it might take you a few trips and a couple of pairs of sunglasses to enjoy it, but who knows—in the end, you might find that going to the Vag is just “peachy!”

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34 Comments

  • except for says:

    @except for 1. lerner aint picturesque

    2. i wouldnt have minded a lavender student center.

    3. just kidding on 2, not at all on 1

  • ewww says:

    @ewww no one wants a rusty vag

  • I'll take it! says:

    @I'll take it! “vision of entering the 70’s”, warm and bright color scheme, a personality — this sounds like a *good* student center.
    And Lerner is indeed *not* “picturesque”. Lerner also sucks.

  • Nice says:

    @Nice Nice article!

  • transformers? says:

    @transformers? buildings dont have personalities. this leaves me to believe that this building is actually a transformer, and will destroy us all.

  • aesthete says:

    @aesthete With the Vag on one side of B’way, and the NW Science Bldg on the other, it’s hard to decide which is the least offensive side of the street to walk on.

  • wait for it . . . says:

    @wait for it . . . i’m hungry.

  • major error says:

    @major error I haven’t even finished reading the article yet, but I am 100% sure that the building was never called nor will ever be called “The Vagelos Center.” It will be called the Diana Center. That is a huge mistake, Bwog.

    1. also says:

      @also If I remember correctly, the outside color scheme was chosen to match the hues of the bricks around the rest of campus. That would probably be something you’d want to mention when discussing the color scheme…

    2. James says:

      @James You’re correct that it never was officially called that, but here’s the article with the rumor that led to the nickname “The Vag”:

      http://bwog.net/articles/the_word_cacophonous_gains_new_relevance_on_campus

      1. Alum says:

        @Alum It’s too bad, really. I’ve never heard of another building that bore the donor’s given name instead of his/her surname. Mr. and Mrs. Vagelos are very accomplished, so it would be great to associate their name more closely with Barnard. Too bad we all (note that I’m including myself) are too childish to make that practical.

        1. Actually, says:

          @Actually, if you want to get technical, Barnard already has a Vagelos Center–it’s the name of the alumnae affairs office on the first floor of Hewitt.

          And I’m kind of confused about the point of this article. The color is bad and the nickname is worse…we get it.

          1. Alum says:

            @Alum I didn’t realize the alumnae center was named for the Vagelos. (It was still the deanery in my day, even though no one lived there.) But it’s possible for the same donor’s name to be on multiple spaces, like the two Schapiro buildings (the dorm and the engineering building) or the two Warren buildings at the law school.

          2. alumnae? says:

            @alumnae? you do realize Barnard has alumni, right? As in male alumns?

          3. Alum says:

            @Alum It may have some transgender grads, but somehow I don’t think that’s what you’re talking about.

  • terrible says:

    @terrible This is completely unconvincing. I still think the Vag is a total eyesore. It doesn’t blend nicely with the bricks, it stands out like a tremendous boil; plus, from the perspective of campus, its backdrop is actually the surrounding greenery, not the bricks of other buildings. They could easily have picked a nice pastel blue or green for the windows.

  • this article aside says:

    @this article aside i think the building design is modern and beautiful. and i like how the color matches the bricks of the old buildings while still maintaining a 21st century feel. crucify me if you want, at least my comment doesn’t sound like it was written by a crotchety old grandpa talking about “the good ole days”.

  • lerner is pretty bad, but says:

    @lerner is pretty bad, but the vag is worse. cause its orange.

  • Uhhh...Bwog says:

    @Uhhh...Bwog What’s with the Spec’s website? Is the paper no longer accessible over the Internet?

    1. nah says:

      @nah The Spec web people are just moronic. Their site goes offline/broken almost as much as Bwog.

      1. Except says:

        @Except The bwog is run on el-cheapo hosting. Spec, not so cheapo.

  • oh no says:

    @oh no i go to barnard i have to graduate in columbia’s gym hahahahah sucks to be you losers, columbia wanna bes

  • Better than Lerner says:

    @Better than Lerner Let’s just admit it: Lerner sucks. Even with the bright colors (which seem okay to me), the Diana is probably going to be better. At least its architects weren’t on crack…

    1. More importantly says:

      @More importantly The Barnard Administration actually solicited student feedback on the design, and then *gasp* implemented it, instead of brushing it aside as if it doesn’t matter.

      What a concept!!

  • Disgusted says:

    @Disgusted Barnard has invested all this time and money into creating something that looks like a relic from the 70s…like the rest of the inside of their buildings..

    The nikcname is also just vulgar.

    1. Really? says:

      @Really? I have to admit that I can live with the Nexus on campus. They at least made the attempt to make it contextual.
      Also, has anyone been inside the building? I get the feeling the Bwog just did a cursory glance and projected the interior experience.
      In conclusion, I think the Nexus will be a good thing, and will function as a fantastic student center.
      (I reserve the right to amend these comments if the building interior layout and decor sucks.)

    2. Oh, and says:

      @Oh, and a true relic of the 70s would be this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brutalist_architecture

  • BC12 says:

    @BC12 This is a terrible defense. I am disappointed, Bwog.

  • Wait a minute... says:

    @Wait a minute... This is the Vag? I seriously thought is was supposed to be a Barnard chick lying spread eagle for the next hundred years.

  • Also says:

    @Also The renderings of the Vag on its website are way better than the renderings of Lerner…

    http://www.morningside-heights.net/alh.qt

    Yup, still cold and soulless.

  • Lerner says:

    @Lerner has a personality, it’s just an awful one.

  • alum says:

    @alum ok, this one is actually worse than the Vag and NW Science…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Robarts_corner_750px.jpg

  • immature says:

    @immature hahaha the vag is pink

  • ha #5 says:

    @ha #5 amazing

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