Meet the Lab

Current FEELed Members

Astrida Neimanis

Head shot of a woman with short grey hair that is long at the top. They have bold, dark, square glasses and a small smile on their face. She is wearing an orange floral print shirt. There is the edge of a bookshelf and a triangular window in the background.

FEELed Lab Director & Canada Research Chair in Feminist Environmental Humanities, UBC Okanagan

Astrida (she/they/pronoun anarchy, pronounced us-TREE-duh) is a white settler, born on Dish-With-One-Spoon treaty territory (in Hamilton, Ont), whose ancestors come from the Baltic Sea region of Northern Europe. She writes, researches, teaches and collaborates in relation to water, weather, bodies and feminisms, among other tangled environmental matters. She joined UBC Okanagan in 2021 after living and working for six years on Gadigal land, in Sydney Australia, at the University of Sydney.

Dani Pierson

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FEELed Lab Administrator

Dani (she/her) is a MA student at UBCO assisting the FEELed Lab with administrative tasks. She is Metis/settler from Treaty Eight territory (Northern Alberta). Her research focuses on rest as an anticolonial, community-building tool. She has a background in arts and entertainment management and loves it when this experience collides with feminist humanities work.

Natalie Rice

Researcher in / of / on Place /FEELed Librarian (2022-23)

Natalie Rice holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of British Columbia, Okanagan. She has been published by Gaspereau Press: Devil’s Whim Chapbook Series, The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy, Event Magazine, The Dalhousie Review, The Malahat Review, Contemporary Verse Two, and others. Her full-length collection of poetry, “Scorch” will be published by Gaspereau Press in spring 2023. Her creative research / eco-poetics explores how language can generate a non-linguistic knowing of the natural world and does this challengingly and paradoxically through the use of language. She lives in Kelowna, British Columbia and the Bow Valley, Alberta.

Rebecca Ryall

Research Affiliate (Littoral Listening)

Rebecca (she/her) is a PhD student with Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, whose research interests include people-place relationships and dialogue with the more-than-human.  Her field of study encompasses the Nightcap National Park and her forest home in northern NSW Australia – both situated on the unceded lands of the Widjabul:Waibul peoples.

Tara Nicholson

Research Affiliate (Fringe Natures)

Tara Nicholson is a Canadian artist with a site-specific, photo-based practice that explores ecological activism. She has exhibited across Canada including the Art Gallery of Victoria (BC), Modern Fuel (ON), the Burnaby Art Gallery (BC), the Oxygen Art Centre (BC), Parisian Laundry Gallerie (PQ) and at Gallery 44 (ON, 2023) while receiving funding from the BC Arts Council and Canada Council. She attended ‘Earthed’ an international eco-art residency at the Banff Centre (2019, AB) and was awarded the Künstlerhaus Dortmund (DE) Artist-in-Residence Award (2017). Since 2013, she has taught at the University of Victoria and holds degrees from Ryerson University (BFA), Concordia University (MFA), and UBC (PostDip). In 2020, Nicholson commenced her PhD at UBC Okanagan (SSHRC funded) to document climate research within the Arctic while examining Critical Animal & Extinction Studies, Decolonial and Feminist Readings of Science & Technology and the role of art to produce change.

Daisy Pullman

Cultivating Environmental Attention Project Team Member

Bio coming soon!

Haida Gaede

Cultivating Environmental Attention Project Team Member

Haida Gaede (she/her; pronounced HI-dah GAY-dee) is a learner, teacher, and mental health therapist born and raised in the unceded ancestral territory of the Syilx Okanagan People. She graduated in the early 2010s with her BA and BEd from UBC Vancouver, and recently completed her Master of Social Work Degree at UBC’s Okanagan campus. Haida sees social justice and environmental justice as being intrinsically intertwined, and is engaged in ongoing explorations of practicing from abolition feminist and intersectional environmentalist frameworks, particularly through an arts-integrated lens. 

In 2023, she is working toward being able to offer Canine Assisted Therapy with her therapy pup in-training, Bert. Haida is also taking steps to expand her mutual aid initiative called “The Okanagan Period Pantry”, which offers free and unrestricted access to menstrual products for folks living in Kelowna and the surrounding areas.

You’re invited to follow Bertie’s adventures as well as the Period Pantry’s evolution on Instagram: @bertie.therapy & @ok.periodpantry

Natalie Forssman

Cultivating Environmental Attention Project Team Member

Natalie (she/her) will join UBC Okanagan’s Department of Community, Culture, and Global Studies as an Assistant Professor of Teaching in January 2023, where she will teach and pursue educational leadership projects in the new Bachelor of Sustainability (B.Sust.) Program at the intersections of anthropology, science and technology studies, and the environmental humanities. She is an ethnographer of science who experiments in interdisciplinary research, communication, teaching, and facilitation. She completed her Ph.D. in Communication and Science Studies at University of California San Diego, and was a core member of Aarhus University Research on the Anthropocene, a transdisciplinary project in Denmark investigating feral landscapes and ecologies through anthropology and the biosciences. Recently, she has taught communication and equity in technology/design at UBC Okanagan’s School of Engineering.

Rina Garcia Chua

FIRE + WATER Team Member

Rina Garcia Chua is a Jack and Doris Shadbolt Fellow in the Humanities at Simon Fraser University and she received her PhD from the University of British Columbia. She is the editor of Sustaining the Archipelago: An Anthology of Philippine Ecopoetry (UST Publishing House, 2018), and co-editor of Empire and Environment: Ecological Ruin in the Transpacific (University of Michigan Press, 2022). Rina is also co-editor of The Goose: A Journal of Arts, Environment, and Culture in Canada and is currently completing an anthology of Southeast Asian Eco-Writings with Esther Vincent and Ann Ang (Manoa Journal, 2023). Her current book manuscript develops the framework of a migrant reading practice in analyzing curations, collations, and anthologies of literary and visual cultures. 

Zeinab Omar

FIRE + WATER Team Member

Zeinab (she/her) is an undergraduate student majoring in Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies with a minor in Psychology at UBCO. Her family immigrated from Somalia to Toronto (Tkaronto), Ontario, where she was born and raised. She previously attended the University of Toronto where she completed the first two years of her degree before transferring to UBCO. She currently resides on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Syilx Okanagan Nation; she recently joined the FEELed Lab as a research assistant to help conceptualize, plan, and convene the 2023 Fire + Water symposium. In the near future, she hopes to attend law school to become a practicing family lawyer.

Jennifer Hamilton

Research Affiliate

Jennifer Hamilton (she/they) lives and works on Anaiwan Country in the northern tablelands of NSW, Australia. She is a Senior Lecturer in English Literary Studies at the University of New England. Prior to taking on this role she worked with Astrida at the University of Sydney as a Postdoctoral Research Associate. Her research uses a combo of literary studies, queer/feminist/anti-colonial theory, creative practice and community economies methods to explore weather, housework and affect.

Jennifer was a Visiting Scholar at the Lab from January-March 2023.

Therese Keogh

Visiting Artist and Researcher, University of Melbourne

Therese Keogh is an artist and writer living on Boon Wurrung and Wurundjeri Country. Her practice operates at intersections between sculpture, geography, and landscape architecture, to produce multilayered projects exploring the socio-political and material conditions of narrative and knowledge production. Therese works collaboratively through writing and research projects, and is invested in collective imaginaries as a process of creating more just relations to land.

Therese is a Visiting Artist-Scholar at the Lab January-May 2023.

Rebecca Macklin

Visiting Scholar

Dr. Rebecca Macklin (she/her) is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at the University of Edinburgh. Her current research project examines literary and cultural engagements with gender, Indigeneity and the extractive industries. She will be a Visiting Scholar at the  FEELed Lab in March and April 2023, working on her project “Resisting Toxic Climates.” She will be presenting this work as part of the FCCS Research Series on 31 March, which all are welcome to attend.

FEELed Lab Alumni

Madeline (Madi) Donald

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Research Affiliate (Littoral Listening)

Madeline (Madi) is working on a PhD project that is grounded in relational research methodologies, saturated by the riparian habitats of the Okanagan watershed, and leaning ethnoecologically. In her research Madi is interested in the interaction possibilities that humans perceive in relation with plants in their quotidian environments. This is a process of coming to understand how fields of perceived interaction possibilities, or landscapes of (botanical) affordances, structure and are structured by assertions of value. Madi supported the recurring launches and L/landings of the FEELed Lab as the inaugural Research Associate (2021-2022).

Emilie Ovenden

ALT 2040 Project Team Member

Émilie (she/her) is an MA student in Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies at UBCO. She is a settler, born and raised in Montréal (Tiohtià:ke), Québec, but currently residing on the unceded land of the Syilx (Okanagan) People. She joined the FEELed Lab as a research assistant to support the development of a new course in environmental humanities methods. Her own graduate research focuses on carbon offsetting through community forestry as climate adaptation. 

Olga Koroleva

Research Affiliate (Littoral Listening)

Olga F. Koroleva is a UK-based artist – curator – un-academic researcher – forager – lecturer. Her work honours slow practice and self-care while exploring ways of non-exploitative cohabitation with multiple others on this planet. She works primarily with expanded research cinema, and is the founder of the international peer group The Political Animal. She has previously taught at The Royal College of Art, London, The School of Art, Architecture and Design at London Metropolitan University, Wimbledon College of Arts, Chelsea College of Art and Design, and Bucknell University, PA, US. Her recent work has been made possible with funding from the Arts Council England. Her moving image work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, and original written work commissioned for Ocean Archive, TBA21-Academy and CSPA Quarterly.

Irene Trejo

Research Affiliate (Littoral Listening)

Transdisciplinary poet, journalist and editor from Mexico, currently exploring inhabiting different lands. Her work focuses on the investigation of relational practices and ecosomatics within the interaction and limits of bodies, possibility, identity, poetry, sound, space-time, and different disciplines and processes of creation. She is co-founder of Poesía sin Muros (Poetry Without Borders) and waters Fluid Ecotonalism, as well as its strands. She studied music and dance while growing up and has degrees in Digital Media and Investigative Journalism from UB and Columbia NY. She also studied Direction in Independent Experimental Film. She was part of the artistic program IMÁN exploring the concept of voice in 2020. In the summer of 2021, she published her first book of poetry – also documenting some of her video and performative pieces – titled “Rendirse to Resist” with the independent publishing house Aire. She is part of the educational program and scholarship “Ladridos” 2023. And is an enthusiastic autodidact and collaborator.

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