Emily Carr University Hires Four New Permanent Indigenous Faculty Members

Architect Showcase 003 ECU 2017 11 08
Photo by Ema Peters

By Perrin Grauer

Posted on August 27, 2019 | Updated August 30, 2019, 1:28pm

Emily Carr University of Art + Design is pleased to announce the hiring of four full-time Indigenous faculty members.

Gina Adams joins ECU as Assistant Professor, Foundation; Christine Howard Sandoval comes on board as Assistant Professor, Interdisciplinary Art Praxis; Gabrielle L’Hirondelle Hill will be taking on a role as Assistant Professor, Interdisciplinary Art Praxis; and Jay White joins the university as Assistant Professor, Foundation.

They bring their years of scholarship, achievement and experience to the university as part of a cluster hiring initiative designed to introduce an interdisciplinary group of Indigenous academics to the university at the same time. Their hiring nearly doubles the number of tenured and tenure-track Indigenous faculty at the university.

“Indigenizing the university is part of the serious responsibility we have to each other, the land and the future,” says Dr. Gillian Siddall, President and Vice-Chancellor.

“We are thrilled to welcome these new faculty members to the ECU community as we open up discourses on the role of art, design and media in the reconciliation process. It is our duty to foster diverse and inclusive environments that encourage our students to be part of transforming the institution and reflect the varied perspectives of our community.”

Indigeneity is a core priority of ECU’s strategic plan, which includes an ongoing commitment to increase the number of full-time Indigenous faculty. In pursuing this goal, ECU reaffirms its commitment to acting on the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.

The university continues to work on integrating Indigenous knowledge systems into its curriculum, pedagogy, governance and research. To that end, ECU is currently recruiting a Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Futurisms and Artistic Research to join the university starting in 2020.


Gina Adams
, Assistant Professor, Foundation | August 2019

Gina is a contemporary Indigenous hybrid artist of Ojibwa Anishinabe and Lakota descent of Waabonaquot of White Earth Reservation in Minnesota. Her cross-media, hybrid studio work, which has been exhibited extensively throughout North America and resides in many public and private collections, includes sculpture, ceramics, painting, printmaking, drawing, and the re-use of antique quilts and broken treaties between the United States and Native American tribes.

In 2013, Gina received an MFA from the University of Kansas, where she focused on visual art, curatorial practice, and critical theory. In 2002, she received a BFA from the Maine College of Art. Gina comes to Emily Carr from the Faculty of Visual Arts in Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado.

Gabrielle L’Hirondelle Hill, Assistant Professor, Interdisciplinary Art Praxis | August 2020

Gabrielle L’Hirondelle Hill is a Cree and Metis artist and writer whose sculptural practice explores the history of found materials to inquire into concepts of land, property, and economy. Most recently, her work has shown at Unit 17, Polygon Gallery, and the Morris and Helen Belkin Gallery in Vancouver; the Alberta Art Gallery in Edmonton; SBC galerie d’art contemporain in Montreal; and STRIDE gallery in Calgary. Hill is a member of BUSH gallery, an Indigenous artist collective seeking to decentre Eurocentric models of making and thinking about art, instead prioritizing land-based teachings and Indigenous epistemologies.

Gabrielle’s writing has been published in numerous places, most recently in Beginning with the Seventies (Helen Belkin, 2019). She is also the co-editor of The Land We Are: Artists and Writers Unsettle the Politics of Reconciliation (ARP 2009) and Read, Listen, Tell: Indigenous Stories from Turtle Island (Wilfrid Laurier University, 2017).

Christine Howard Sandoval, Assistant Professor, Interdisciplinary Art Praxis | August 2019

Christine is an Obispeño Chumash and Hispanic artist currently based in New York City. Her work challenges the boundaries of representation, access, and habitation through the use of performance, video, and sculpture. Howard Sandoval makes work about contested places, such as the historic Native and Hispanic waterways of northern New Mexico; the Gowanus Canal, a Superfund site in New York; and an interfacing suburban-wildland in Colorado.

Christine has exhibited nationally and internationally at venues including: the Museum of Capitalism (Oakland, CA); designtransfer, Universität der Künste Berlin (Berlin, Germany); El Museo Del Barrio (Bronx, NY); and Socrates Sculpture Park (Queens, NY). Her first solo museum exhibition debuted at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center in May 2019, during which time she was the Mellon Artist in Residence at Colorado College.

Christine has also been awarded residencies at the Santa Fe Art Institute, Triangle Arts, and The Vermont Studio Center. She holds a BFA from Pratt Institute and an MFA from Parsons The New School for Design. She currently teaches within the Art, Media, and Technology program at Parsons.

Jay White
, Assistant Professor, Foundation | August 2019

Jay is an interdisciplinary artist and animator of Mi’kmaq and European descent who activates storytelling across multiple platforms and various media to transmit land-based knowledge to future generations. His installations have exhibited across Canada and internationally, and his animated films have won numerous international awards, including Best Animated Short at the Worldwide Animation Festival in 2006.

After completing a BSc in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UBC in 1996 and a Diploma in Computer Animation from the Vancouver Film School in 1997, Jay received an MAA from Emily Carr University in 2014. He has been teaching at Emily Carr as a sessional faculty member since 2008.

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