Free Drawing School Online Challenge led by Isabel Cordeiro

6 July 2020

Free Drawing School Online Challenge led by Isabel Cordeiro

Join the Free Drawing School live online every Monday at 10am.

A different drawing challenge is announced each week for you to get involved with at home between 10am-12pm guided live with an artist. On Monday 6 July Isabel Cordeiro will lead the online drawing challenge.

Isabel Cordeiro is an artist living in Amsterdam. She works across painting, installation and video. In her practice Cordeiro explores the intersubjective relations between us and art works (or the possibility thereof), both from the perspective of the maker and the viewer.

Her most recent work, Pardon my subjectivity! consists of an ambiguous shape/creature/painting that moves around the space, assisted by a robot (see images). Cordeiro follows it attempting to balance a coffee cup on it without success. By creating a quasi-slapstick situation where the work seems to gains agency and resists its maker, Cordeiro raises questions such as: Who is in control? Can we think of interactions of different orders between us and objects?

Isabel came to Hospitalfield for four months in 2017 as part of a partnership residency with the Mondriaan Fund.

The Free Drawing School Online continues over the summer with many more challenges as we invite lots of guest artists to design the weekly challenge for you to join in with.

The Free Drawing School challenges are designed to be done at home with the resources you can bring together from your drawers and cupboards.

The details of the challenge will be announced here and on social media at 10.00am.

You will have two hours in which to complete the challenge and post your work either in the comments on the Facebook event for others to see or on twitter or instagram with the hashtag #freedrawingschool.

You can also email your outcomes to

1-3. Pardon my subjectivity!, Isabel Cordeiro, 2019. Images courtesy of the artist.
4. Image courtesy of Hospitalfield.


The Free Drawing School is made possible with generous funding support from The Robertson Trust and The National Heritage Lottery Fund.

The Challenge: The Garden I Forgot led by Isabel Cordeiro


“Hi everyone!

I’m Isabel, an artist from Lisbon, Portugal and I’ve been living in the Netherlands for a while and right now I’m doing a residency in the South of the Netherlands at the European Ceramics Centre.

I am interested in colour. I often paint with patches of colour on different surfaces and I’m currently experimenting with using ceramics. This is my studio for four months. I can show you some examples. This is porcelain that I painted with patches of colour. This is also porcelain that I’ve folded, painted and folded. I’ve been also developing my own colours. I’ve quite enjoyed working with porcelain. This is to give you a bit of context as you can see my studio as a background.

This challenge deals with memory colour and space. The idea came to my mind after thinking about the time I spent at Hospitalfield and realising that actually some memories and places were still quite vivid in my mind where as others vanished. I realised this when I received the email from Hospitalfield asking if I wanted to join the challenge. There were two pictures of the gardens at Hospitalfield. The place is now under construction because they’re expanding and when I look at these pictures I couldn’t really understand if I was facing the front or the back of the building and I couldn’t really place myself. It was only when I started to think about my routines while I was there that I started to be able to make sense of the space and the place.

I had to revisit the routines I had while there to be able to re construct the space and place. One of the things I used to do while there was every day I would walk to the vegetable garden and collect lettuce for our communal lunch that was taken care of by Simon the chef and I would often help prepare the salad an chat with Simon while things were getting ready for lunch. It was based on this idea of routines and the encounters I had at Hospitalfield that I was able to re-think the place and revisit the place.

The Garden I Forgot

Let’s start with the actual challenge which consists of drawing or painting a memory of a place by using blocks of colour.

I’ve been doing the exercise myself based on the experiences that I spoke about before. I’ve been using my brushes and lots of paint. You can use colour pencils, pens, paint whatever you have at hand.

Important is that you can explore colour and have lots of options.

This is the one I made based on the experiences I spoke about before.

As you can see a lot of colours. This is to do with my memory of being in the gardens of Hospitalfield. So for instance one of the things I did was to mask this centre piece because I remember there was a sculpture there but I don’t the shape of that sculpture. I think it was a little girl or something. So I decided to have this as a central piece and I masked it with tape and everything revolved around that one particular image.

Good luck with the challenge and I’ll be around chatting with you while you go along.”

Isabel Cordeiro

You have two hours in which to complete the challenge and post your work either in the comments on the Facebook event for others to see or on twitter or instagram with the hashtag #freedrawingschool.

You can also email your drawings to

Materials Needed



I’m Isabel Cordeiro and I will be leading the next Free Drawing School Online Challenge on Monday 6 July.

In my practice, which consists mostly of painting and installation, I use a lot of colour. I often paint patches of colour over all kinds of different surfaces as a way of claiming a certain space.

The challenge will deal with memory, colour and space. This has to do with my memories of being at Hospitalfield in 2017 and how certain images are still quite vivid in my mind. Whilst others almost vanished.

I remember simple things such as walking from the kitchen to the vegetable garden to fetch lettuce for Simon the chef, just before our meals. I used to do this almost every day, and chat with Simon while helping him getting the salad ready. When tracing my steps back, impressions started to form in my mind in the form of patches of colour: clusters of patches creating areas with different densities, and patches with different intensities of colour.

As material and to start with, I would like to ask you to think about a place you’ve visited or a space that still plays a role in your memory, In terms of material, you will need:

– Paper (any size, type)

– Coloured pencils, pens, painting (whatever you have at hand, anything that you have that will allow you to experiment with colour – the more the better!)

Look forward to seeing you next Monday!

Isabel Cordeiro


Images: Extra 1,2,3, Isabel Cordeiro. Courtesy of the artist.

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