Published on November 2, 2010 by John
Eddy Cobiness, (born 1933 in Warroad, Minnesota, United States, died January 1, 1996 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada) was a Canadian artist. He was an Ojibwa-Indian and his art work is characterized by scenes from the life outdoors and nature. He began with realistic scenes and then evolve into more abstract work. He belonged to the “Woodland School of Art” and was a prominent member of the “Professional Native Indian Artists Incorporation”, better known as the “Indian Group of Seven”.
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Cobiness grew up on Buffalo Point First Nation’s Indian reserve in southeast Manitoba. Like the other members of the “Indian Group of Seven”, Jackson Beardy, Alex Janvier, Norval Morrisseau, Daphne Odjig, Carl Ray and Joseph Sanchez, Cobiness was a so-called “Treaty Indian”. He belonged to a tribe which Canada has signed a treaty under the “Indian Act of Canada”. Cobiness has taught painting himself. He was a graphic designer who began drawing pictures of birds in sand, snow or on cardboard, in his childhood. In the 1950s, during his military service years, he discovered working in watercolour. He studied colour and composition. In the 1960s his ink and watercolour drawings were commercially successful, and he began his art career. For Cobiness, the life outdoors and nature always was subject of his works. He began with realistic scenes and then evolve into more abstract work, influenced by his art colleague at the time, painter Benjamin Chee Chee. He further developed his work unimpeded and worked with several styles, using many media. It would bring him international recognition. It is known that Queen Elizabeth II has work of Cobiness in her collection. Cobiness died in Winnipeg, Manitoba on January 1, 1996 to the effect of complications from diabetic.