Cavalcade – Fabrication



Selecting the sheets

The selection of the sheets was done by the whole Inner Group of Mathemalchemists: proposals were solicited in many rounds, many were refined after discussion, and votes collected to decide which proposals would progress to fabrication. 

After a size was decided for a page, fabrication started by Ingrid Daubechies making or obtaining a version at sufficiently high resolution to print a sharp version via Spoonflower at the desired scale. These were then sewn by Dominique Ehrmann on a substrate that allows for a  different curling configuration (using a heat gun) in each new build of the installation, depending on the order in which the individual Cavalcade sheets are mounted and the viewing angles in the venue. Every sheet has a sleeve through which it gets threaded on one of the support arches.

Sleeve with support
Closer view of the sleeve
Stephan LaCourse fabricating the support in Dominique’s workshop

Two support arches in steel go from the Adult Silhouette, one from each hand, to an anchor embedded in the Doodle Page, organizing the Cavalcade sheets in one large loop extending from the Adult in the direction of the Doodle Page and back again. A much smaller arc circles the skirt of the Adult, supporting the sheets with cat pictures. This support structure was designed and fabricated by Dominique and Stephan LaCourse.

Source for the content of the sheets:

  1. 1. Archimedes: Volume of the sphere — sketch by Susan Goldstine
  2. 2. Erathostenes geometrically — figure by Brent Yorgey
  3. 3. Complex Cubic Numbers — figure by Edmund 
  4. 4. Polya Wallpaper groups: the figure itself is from Polya’s 1924 paper (G. Pólya, Über die Analogie der Kristallsymmetrie in der Ebene, Z. Krist. 60 (1924), 278–282); the signed copy appears in Doris Schattschneider’s AMS Notices article
  5. 5. Page from Henry’s Notebook — by Henry Segerman
  6. 6. Euler’s polyhedra formula in Gauss’s notebook : Permission from Jon Kujawa, who took photo in Mittag-Leffler Institute in Sweden
  7. 7. 2D-3D hyperbolic plane
  8. 8. Farey sequences and Ford circles :  from Wikipedia (link:
  9. 9. Mice illustrating dihedral group: drawings by Ingrid
  10. 10. Galois: diagram by Jessica K. Sklar superposed on portrait of Galois (borrowed from Wikipedia; image is in the public domain)
    11. Fano: redrawn by Ingrid after Figure 1 in write-up about Fano plane at
  11. 12.Additive Mixing: original figure by Bronna Butler and Jessica.
  12. 13. Koch snowflakes: pictures contributed by Kimberly Roth and Edmund
  13. 14. Prime number race: written and drawn by Li-Mei Lim
  14. 15. Proofs without words: redrawn by Ingrid from Wikipedia figure and from source of sum of 4^(-n) series picture
  15. 16. David Henderson’s Theorem: hand-drawn sketches and writing by David Henderson, contributed by Daina Taimina; other figures redrawn after Edmund.
  16. 17. Dehn Lemma extension: contributed by Daina Taimina, redrawn after hand-drawn sketches by David Henderson
  17. 18. Extension of Pythagoras for arbitrary triangles: drawing by Ingrid
  18. 19. Knot-to-link-to-knot: drawings by Mary William
  19. 20. Martin Gardner mathematical games: picture by Bronna Butler
  20. 21. Minkowski primes: picture by Li-Mei
  21. 22. Tetrahedral kites and Sierpinski: header of National Geographic article by Alexander Graham Bell, re-drawings by Ingrid of standard figures
  22. 23. Bouligand Hopf fibration: redrawn by Ingrid after figure in article by Y. Bouligand.
  23. 24. Pythagoras without words: sketched by Susan; according to E.S. Loomis, the proof “was devised by Maurice Laisnez, a high school boy, in the Junior-Senior High School of South Bend, Ind., and sent to me, May 16, 1939, by his class teacher, Wilson Thornton.” 25. Emmy Noether: sketch by Stephanie Magdziak
  24. 26. Rhind papyrus: from British Museum website
  25. 27. Eigenfunctions Laplace-Beltrami disk: redrawn by Ingrid, after standard plots.
  26. 28. Vortices developing after cylindrical obstruction: snapshots from simulation by Amanda Ghassaei.
  27. 29. Knots: drawings by Rochy Flint
  28. 30. Evolving wavelet: picture by Ingrid and Henry
  29. 31. Gerrymandering: pictures from Moon Duchin and Jonathan Mattingly
  30. 32. Seashells : Bronna designed a composition using 3 downloaded internet license-free seashell images: the Pearly Nautilus (after Owen), an 1868 Illustration from a manual of the Mollusca: a treatise on recent and fossil shells / by Dr. S. P. Woodward; illustrated by A. N. Waterhouse and Joseph Wilson Lowry, and two drawings by Wenceslaus Hollar (Unknown date, author lived 1607-1677): Syrinx aruanus and Tectus niloticus (synonym: Trochus niloticus)
  31. 33. Latex example: by Li-Mei
  32. 34. Navajo geometry
  33. 35. From knot to braid: drawn by Ingrid
  34. 36. Thurston figures: gleaned from unpublished version of William Thusrton’s book at MSRI, redrawn by Ingrid
  35. 37. Tricolorability: by Henry 
  36. 38. Katherine Johnson: composition from NASA technical reports by Katherine Johnson
  37. 39. Sum of angles in triangle in Elliptic, Hyperbolic and Euclidean 2-dim space: drawings by Rochy
  38. C1. Arnold’s cat: drawn by Ingrid, after standard pictures
  39. C2. Baker’s map on Cat: drawn by Ingrid, inspired by standard pictures.

Read more about the Cavalcade

Leave a Reply