10 May 2023

Coen artist growing in popularity

| Sarah Martin
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FROM the tiny community of Coen to the pages of renowned fashion magazines, Cape York artist Naomi Hobson is wowing the art world.

“Here I am, an artist from the bush with a spread in David Jones and Vogue on me just being me,” she said.

“I would never ever in my wildest dreams have thought I’d be featured in magazines like that, it’s surreal, a real pinch-me moment.”

Hobson, born and bred in Cape York, has been an artist her whole life and said she now feels like she has made it.

“It also shows other young people and people of colour that no matter what you do and what path you go down, if you do it well and believe in yourself, opportunities open up everywhere,” she said.

The world seems to agree that the quietly spoken artist has definitely made it, with her works in demand in America, Italy, Singapore and all over Australia.

Even the British Museum recently invited her to exhibit her photographs.

“Everybody loves the photographs,” Hobson said.

“I was just really proud of the young people in the photographs, you can get a sense of who my people are and the community through the images.”

Hobson’s art crosses genres, from colourful paintings to portrait-style photographs and ceramics, and is a way for the artist to express her love for her Cape York community and culture.

“I love Coen and I’m proud of Cape York. Who would have thought other people would fall in love with it through my art, too.”

She said 2022 had been an incredibly busy and exciting year, with the past few weeks spent in colder climes away from her home in Coen.

“I’ve just been to the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair, which is the biggest art fair in the country, and now I’m spending three weeks in Melbourne making ceramics,” she said.

Hobson said if she could tell other aspiring young artists anything, it would be to stay authentic, just be themselves and keep trying.

“I never ever thought I’d be in the position that I am in today, but I just kept doing it and stuck at it, and here I am.”

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