In the Spring of 2016, it was announced on a Columbia blog that the sculpture "Reclining Figure," a sculpture by Henry Moore, would be installed in front of Butler Library. It’s 9-by-11-by-7 feet, and looks like a tarantula lovingly honey-glazed by a team of trained rhesus monkeys.
A group of students, including editors emeriti of the Blue and White, Daniel Stone and Hallie Swanson, and sailing aficionado Alex Randall, immediately staged a protest against the installation of the statue on the grounds that the student body hadn’t had prior warning (and against the general aesthetics of the thing). They promptly launched Following this, CCSC released a petition to the entire study body asking students their thoughts on the statue, to which 859 students responded; 57.8% preferred it to be placed elsewhere on campus, 32.5% didn’t want the sculpture on campus at all, and only 9.7% wanted to keep the sculpture in its original intended location.
The sculpture debacle sparked a flurry of op-eds both for and against the sculpture. The debate was full of both sound and fury.
It was rumored that soon after this grassroots uprising (it is said that if Dan Stone had not gone to the obscure Columbia blogs page in the first place, students would still not know of the statue’s impending arrival), the Trustees halted installation and are planning to place it elsewhere. Only time will tell.