RHA Learning Event

Drawing around (spoken language): Drawing workshop with artist Cara Farnan
16 May 2020 - 15 May 2021
Time: 3pm - 4.30pm

Live event via. Zoom Click here to book your ticket.

This workshop is part of our programme for National Drawing Day, taking place on Saturday 16 May. #nationaldrawingday

Who is this workshop for:

  • All ages are welcome. This workshop is suitable for teenagers and adults, and younger children should join with adult guidance.
  • Drawing ‘skills’ are not necessary but some degree of being comfortable with a drawing tool would be good.

A language in itself, the act of drawing can capture feelings, ideas, nuances and intentions that are tucked within, in-between, underneath or outside of the words we write or say. As such, the practice of drawing could, in this time, take on a vital role as we attempt to converse with each other at a distance. Together, in this workshop, we will try to tap into this element of drawing.

Responding in a way to the online environment and to the importance of our voices as transmitters of experience and information during current conditions; we will focus on making drawings which intuitively and imaginatively respond to spoken language and to what we are listening to, as opposed to direct observation and representation of what we can see.

We will start by exploring some methods of mark making with the tools we have to hand, and then building on these methods, Cara will guide the group through making some small drawings in response to spoken instructions, sounds and very short readings.

The workshop will be less about producing ‘artworks’ and more concerned with using drawing as a method of thinking and reflecting, whether as an element of a larger artistic practice, or simply a way of passing time and being present with yourself and the world around you. Given the current situation, access to ‘traditional’ drawing materials is limited for most people. With that in mind, this workshop has been planned to accommodate whatever drawing tools and surfaces you might have to hand!

You will need:

  • At least one drawing tool
    • anything you have to hand or enjoy working with, eg; colouring pencils, a biro, charcoal, graphite, a fancy pen, some markers, a collection of beloved pencils, stylus for a digital drawing tablet….
  • Surfaces to draw on
    • preferably surfaces you don’t feel too precious about and quite a lot of them, this workshop is more about making lots of small drawings without overthinking them!
    • Eg; A notebook, some sheets of newsprint, a sketchbook, sheets of copy paper, the back of old artworks, offcuts from bigger drawings or paintings, a copy book, a refill pad, drawing/illustration programme on your laptop or tablet….)


Cara Farnan, b.1994, Dublin, is an artist based between Dublin and Utrecht. She is drawn to the space between what we know about the world and what we sense about it. Right now she is curious about the materiality of voices, processes of collaboration and exchange and what it means for a body to be both material and event. She works across writing, performance, sound, video, sculpture and drawing. Farnan graduated with a BA in Fine Print from NCAD in 2016 and is currently undertaking an MA in HKU, Utrecht. Farnan was a member of RHA’s Peer Residency studio in 2017.

Recent exhibitions include solo exhibition Sometimes the river flows backwards curated by Róisín Bohan and Basic Space, Backwater Artists Group, Cork; and group exhibitions; PLATFORM 2019 curated by Sharon Murphy, Draíocht Blanchardstown; Third Thursday curated by Jennifer Park, Arts Letters & Numbers, NY, Some Concrete Possibilities curated by Síobhan Mooney, The Library Project and The Museum of Mythological Waterbeasts, Ormston House, Limerick.

Image: Cara Farnan, four drawings from group one, graphite on wall paper samples, 2020


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