A series of colorful, delicate lines meander, overlap, and intersect across the surface of Ingrid Calame’s #313 Drawing (Tracings from Buffalo, NY). Although, at first, the composition appears abstract, it hails directly from imagery that exists in the real world. Calame is interested in the traces left behind by human beings, including those that may be considered unsightly or unremarkable, such as coffee stains on a floor or tire tracks on a street. This work was created as part of an artist residency with the Albright-Knox, during which Calame engaged several locations tied to Buffalo’s industrial history, including a grain elevator and the former site of Bethlehem Steel, as well as an abandoned community swimming pool and even the museum’s parking lot. With a crew of local volunteers, she traced the marks left behind by commerce, weather, and the countless people who have traversed these spaces. In Calame’s drawing, cracks in the asphalt take on the aesthetics of a map and several recognizable numbers, which were traced from a floor, initially float to the surface. Yet, in the areas where the lines are densely layered, the color palette darkens and new shapes emerge.
Label from Drawing: The Beginning of Everything, July 8–October 15, 2017