Joana Joachim earned her PhD in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies and at the Institute for Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies at McGill University with Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson. Her research interests include Black feminist art histories, Black Canadian studies and Canadian slavery studies. Joachim's SSHRC-funded doctoral work, There/Then, Here/Now: Black Women’s Hair and Dress in the French Empire, examines the visual culture of Black women’s hair and dress in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, investigating practices of self-preservation and self-care through the lens of creolization. Starting in fall 2020, as a Provostial Research Scholar in Institutional Histories, Slavery, and Colonialism postdoctoral fellow, Joachim will be investigating the lives of Sarah, Marie, Marie-Louise, and the other enslaved individuals who survived the James McGill household. Her project will employ what she terms Black Feminist Art Historical praxis in the McGill Visual Arts Collection and the James McGill archival fonds to centre Black and Indigenous experiences in Canada’s history through an exploration of the collection’s holdings.
In 2017, Joachim became the first Black research and exhibitions coordinator at Artexte library and exhibition centre where she worked until the completion of her doctorate. During her tenure at Artexte she coordinated such projects as: the collective reading night Decolonial Alliances, the conference After Arts Against Postracialism, and the exhibition SPECULATIONS. Her exhibition Blackity is set to open during the fall of 2020. Joachim’s writing has been published nationally in C Magazine (Spring 2020), Spaces and Places of Canadian Popular Culture (2019), RACAR (Fall 2018), locally in art/iculation magazine (2017), Tic Art Toc (Fall 2015) as well as internationally in Americana: E-Journal of American Studies in Hungary (Spring 2017). Her book chapter “Hoodies and Regimentals: Black Attire and Access in the Canadian Art Museum” is to be featured in History, art and Blackness in Canada (working title) (forthcoming).