Graffiti in the Library?!
Graffiti is a ubiquitous feature of public spaces, and while the Hekman Library is far from overrun with it, graffiti can be seen in individual study carrels, particularly on the 3rd floor against the north wall. These tend to be messages of encouragement, funny quotes, and cute drawings. The 1st and 2nd floors are largely graffiti-free, as they are high-traffic, social areas, where there are plenty of other distractions to attract a wandering mind. The relative absence of graffiti on the 4th floor may be explained by the fact that this is the "seminary floor." Enough said. Why there is so little graffiti on the 5th floor is somewhat of a mystery, but we conjecture that it may be because the furniture is newer and students are therefore more reluctant to deface it.
In Hekman, graffiti offers an artistic escape from studying, an outlet for rebellion, or a way for generations of students to encourage and commiserate with one another. Phrases such as "You can do it" and "Good luck with studying" alongside smiley faces and hearts serve to motivate the artist and any future viewers, connecting all students at Calvin College.
(Note: This content is taken from an assignment completed by Annaka Koster [senior] for Professor Don Hettinga's writing class. The image on the right is a reproduction of a photo taken by Bastian Bouman [senior]).