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"I Live in an Alvar Aalto"

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Thrusting its sinuous brick curves towards the Charles River, Baker House is one of only two Alvar Aalto works on this side of the Atlantic. As school gets underway, 300 students every year at MIT have the chance to sleep, eat, study, and play within the walls of this mid-century modernist masterpiece. For the second part in a series of glimpses inside unconventional spaces on campus, we talk to Jean Li, a four-year resident and an official architecture tour guide of Baker House.

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  Jean's room is a Pie, which is also the largest room in the entire dorm.
    Jean's room is a Pie, which is also the largest room in the entire dorm.
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  A pleasant walk up six flights of stairs.
    A pleasant walk up six flights of stairs.
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  A dorm-row-side view of Baker House during the dark depths of Boston winter.
    A dorm-row-side view of Baker House during the dark depths of Boston winter.
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  A view of the two-story dining hall and atrium. Students tend to gather in the lower level to eat, and the upper level to study.
    A view of the two-story dining hall and atrium. Students tend to gather in the lower level to eat, and the upper level to study.
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  The wooden pole is the center spoke for the surrounding shelves, and divides 'sleeping space' from 'work space.'
    The wooden pole is the center spoke for the surrounding shelves, and divides 'sleeping space' from 'work space.'
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  The second dining level, which is better-lit and boasts a view of the Charles River and a ceiling detailed with maple slats.
    The second dining level, which is better-lit and boasts a view of the Charles River and a ceiling detailed with maple slats.
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  An exterior view of the cantilevered staircases that run up and down the north side of the building.
    An exterior view of the cantilevered staircases that run up and down the north side of the building.

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