Family Activity Inspired by Ingrid Calame's #313 Drawing (Tracings from Buffalo, NY), 2008

Ingrid Calame is interested in the traces left behind that many would consider unremarkable, such as cracks in the pavement, or woodgrains in the floorboards. By tracing these mundane elements, she created this map-like artwork that reflects the City of Buffalo, where it was created.

In this easy Family Activity, we'll walk you through how to make a rubbing map of your home inspired by Calame's #313 Drawing (Tracings from Buffalo, NY), 2008.

Ingrid Calame (American, born 1965). #313 Drawing (Tracings from Buffalo, NY), 2008. Colored pencil on trace Mylar, 112 x 72 inches (284.5 x 182.9 cm). Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; George B. and Jenny R. Mathews Fund, by exchange, 2010 (2010:6). © 2008 Ingrid Calame. Image courtesy of the artist.

Getting Started

  • When looking at this artwork can you guess what things Calame might have traced?
  • Can you find any numbers or letters hidden in this work?


  • Paper
  • Crayons (you could use a pencil if you don’t have crayons)

Artmaking Activity

1. Gather different colors of crayons and take the wrapping off each one.

2. Next is the fun part! Take your crayons and paper and start searching around your house for different things that could make an interesting texture, such as floorboards, cracks in the tile, even a fly swatter. You could try this outside too! What would the texture of tree bark look like?

3. Place your paper over each new texture or pattern you find. (It helps to have a buddy to hold your paper in place.) Using the edge of one of your crayons, rub over the texture on top of the paper in different directions. You should start to see the patterns and textures appear before your eyes on the paper.

5. Try moving around and finding new things to trace over with your different colors of crayons until you have explored all the rooms in your house and covered your whole paper.

Optional: Share your creation on Twitter or Instagram with #AKBeyondWalls and #MuseumFromHome!

Follow-Up Question and Activity

  • Does your finished artwork look like a map?
  • Ask someone in your family if they can figure out what things you traced and where they are.