Former Bacchanal guest will assume position on Tuesday.
By Scott Fischbein
On Friday, the Office of the President announced that the artist-in-residence position would be filled by none other than the Bacchanal headliner Lupe Fiasco. When meeting together earlier last week, Mr. Fiasco reportedly responded to President Bollinger’s offer by saying, “Ok.”
When reached for further comment Mr. Fiasco claimed, “It’s not like I have much else going on right now.”
“An artist as prolific as Mr. Fiasco is bound to bring a creative spark to the campus,” Bollinger stated Friday evening in an email to the undergraduate student body. “He’ll bring a socially conscious attitude that our students need in order to thrive and which has been otherwise lacking.” Bollinger claimed that he is probably Mr. Fiasco’s biggest fan in the whole world: “This will be great for the Columbia University community and also I have four Lupe posters in my bedroom and three of them were signed by the man himself.”
When we asked about what sort of events and programs we would be able to expect from Mr. Fiasco and the Visual Arts department on campus, President Bollinger said, “Seriously, you guys don’t understand how next-level Lupe’s rhymes are. He goes in harder than anyone else in the game these days. YG. You name it.”
Since Spring Bacchanal, Mr. Fiasco has been reportedly spotted on campus a number of times. A number of undergraduates claim to have seen him playing Farmville on the computers in Butler and reading the newspaper at Uni Café. These sightings have generated rumors as to whether or not Mr. Fiasco would be a permanent resident on our campus following his Spring 2014 performance. “It’d be awesome to see him as the acting head of The Center for Biomedical Communications!” Greg Winslope, CC ’13, said.
We sat down with Mr. Fiasco, who was eating a Sabra at Café 212 in Lerner Hall. “I haven’t really been doing much since the show last spring to be honest,” he said after taking a sip of bubble tea. “I’ve mostly just been hanging out around Columbia, hoping some sort of employment might branch out here. Things just honestly haven’t been going too well for me recently.”
We asked him about what he had been doing around Columbia since his performance. “I started to draw out some blueprints for a building I wanted to design here, but nothing really panned out. Then someone here told me that I should go talk to President Bollinger, because he was a huge fan of mine. Which turned out to be true.”
Mr. Fiasco stated that one of his intended artist-in-residence projects is to create a large mural. “I was thinking maybe a huge canvas and every Columbia student could come and draw a heart on it. I think this is the kind of thing the world needs now to help everyone love each other and stop wars.” Mr. Fiasco hinted at a possible conflict between his ideas and the administration: “Bollinger keeps shooting down my, like, harebrained ideals and pushing me to work on a new mixtape. He’s offered to turn the whole Manhattanville Project into one huge recording studio for me. I’m conflicted though.”
Some Columbia affiliates, however, are conflicted about Mr. Fiasco’s very presence at the school. A group of students gathered at Low Plaza on Friday to protest Mr. Fiasco’s appointment. Jo Schwartzman, CC ’15, claimed, “I for one am horrified and appalled. How can our university implicitly sanction a man who has been caught smuggling weapons-grade plutonium over international borders? A known Holocaust denier and propagandist for the military state in North Korea?” Columbia’s administration has yet to respond to these accusations.