Courtesy the Artist


Eleina is a multidisciplinary artist based in Vancouver, BC. Her artistic practice includes beading, crocheting, sewing, embroidery, drummaking and digital art, among others. “Being able to practice more traditional art styles…helps me feel some kind of connection to my culture, some kind of connection to home,” Eleina shares about why she began creating. [1]

Eleina started sewing at eight years old and began embroidery and beading on her own in high school. “I’ve always liked to work with my hands,” the artist explains. Much of Eleina’s practice involves textiles. “It's nice to be able to make something that’s useful,” she says. “I started with sewing, and I really liked fashion growing up so I would sew a lot of my clothes. I really enjoyed doing that, because it’s like a piece of art that I get to wear to school and stuff.” She approaches her beaded work in the same way, calling it everyday art. “I learned more traditional Indigenous ways of beading in 2019, right before COVID, and I've been doing more traditional styles of beading since then,” she says. Eleina is inspired by many friends she has made in Vancouver. “I’ll go to a beading circle or something and they’ll be doing something new, and they’ll teach me how to do it… Even at Simon Fraser University, where I study neuroscience, they do workshops with the Indigenous Student Centre and that’s where I learned to make moccasins and mukluks,” Eleina shares. More recently, she has been expanding to other mediums of visual art. “I've been painting since I was a kid, but I’m exploring it more now.” After receiving a Kajungiqsaut grant from the Inuit Art Foundation in 2023, Eleina bought an airbrush. Her goal was to combine traditional Inuit art methods, such as carving and ulu making, with modern airbrushing techniques. After collecting carved bones with an Elder in Tuktuuyaqtuuq (Tuktoyaktuk), Inuvialuit Settlement Region, NT, Eleina wanted to explore the medium further as a mode of healing and reconnecting to her culture.

Human anatomy and physiology are common themes throughout Eleina’s work, partly due to her role as a neuroscience student. This theme is evident in pieces like her 2022 Bleeding Heart earrings, a pair made for a Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s March which feature beaded, blood-like drops. Lately, she has also been exploring her own urban Inuk identity by combining traditional and non-traditional mediums and styles. “I love the 80s in general,” she says in talking about style inspiration. “I've been playing around with the airbrush, which is a super 80s medium.” 

During her time as a post-secondary student, Eleina submitted a piece called Nervous System on Muslin (2019) for an art contest at Brigham Young University, where she studied at the time. “The Neuroscience Center at the University was looking for art pieces to decorate their office space,” she says. “I was really into embroidery at the time, and I had this idea to make this big wall hanging.” Eleina was inspired by depictions of the nervous system, which led to the hanging strings featured on the artwork. “I spent a good amount of time on that piece and then entered the art contest and I got first place,” she says. The win later led to Eleina being invited to include her work in various art markets, including the New West Craft Indigenous Market, the Good Stank Stampede Market and the BCFED Labour Convention. She was also commissioned for an Indigenous Digital Media project that aimed to include Indigenous voices in anatomy education. In addition to her visual practice, Eleina has taken part in community radio and music and hopes to start her own radio show. “With my show that I'm going to be proposing, I want to really highlight BIPOC and queer local musicians,” she shares.

Artist Work

About Eleina


Graphic Arts, Jewellery, Textile

Artistic Community:

Mittimatalik (Pond Inlet), NU

Date of Birth:

Artists may have multiple birth years listed as a result of when and where they were born. For example, an artist born in the early twentieth century in a camp outside of a community centre may not know/have known their exact date of birth and identified different years.