New gallery explores the lives of Aboriginal youth

ART: This is one of Ms Hobsons photographs. The colour is centred on the individuals in this photograph which really draws your attention to them. Photo: Supplied
ART: This is one of Ms Hobsons photographs. The colour is centred on the individuals in this photograph which really draws your attention to them. Photo: Supplied

A new photographic exhibition capturing Indigenous youth is coming to the region this month, with Port Augusta residents getting the chance to see amazing photos early next year.

Naomi Hobson's series, 'Adolescent Wonderland', presents evocative photographic portraits of young Aboriginal people from her community of Coen on Cape York Peninsula.

Naomi Hobson is a Southern Kaantju/Umpila woman who lives in Coen, a small town of 360 people in the centre of Cape York Peninsula in Queensland.

She is a multidisciplinary artist who works across many mediums including painting, ceramics and photography.

Ms Hobson said her works expressed her ongoing connection to the country and her ancestors' ties and relationships with their traditional lands.

She references her family's political and social engagements, as well as her own personal engagement with her country and community.

She said she wanted her photographs to empower young people, encourage them to be themselves and to celebrate their uniqueness.

Ms Hobson said she wanted the viewer to become part of the community and provide that insight into the vulnerability, playfulness and everyday moments of a generation transitioning from teenagers into adults.

"Today, photography needs to push the boundary," she said.

"I'm using the medium to tell real stories that I feel don't get told or haven't been told.

"I want people to see who our youth really are which is fun, playful, smart, savvy, proud, adventurous and witty.

"I think young people are getting crazy adventurous with all the apps and photo settings in their mobile phones.

"They're just really connecting with how they want to share their story.

"Young people are so advanced in using technology and they also love getting their photos taken, but let them show you their story, their way and that's what Adolescent Wonderland is all about."

Premier Steven Marshall said he was thrilled that young people in the regions of South Australia would be among the audiences who have the opportunity to experience the very best of contemporary Aboriginal art.

Country Arts SA chief executive Anthony Peluso said Ms Hobson had captured those electrifying coming of age moments.

"These works shine a light on the resilience, vulnerability, humour and playfulness of First Nations young people in regional communities," he said.

The gallery will open in Port Pirie on December 11 and heads to Port Augusta Yarta Purtli Gallery from April 15 until June 5, 2022.