Through her art and life, Joane Cardinal-Schubert honoured her identity as Kainai (Blackfoot), demonstrating her values of representing the Indigenous experience and history. She was a multi-media, visual, and installation artist, a writer, lecturer, free-lance curator and director of film and theatre. Her writing has been published nationally and internationally in art magazines, catalogues and books and she has also served as an editor of Fuse magazine.
Cardinal-Schubert completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a double major in painting and printmaking in 1977 at the University of Calgary. She also had a certificate from the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary and in 1983, received her certificate in Management Development for Arts Administration from the Banff Centre. Cardinal-Schubert served as Assistant Curator at the Nickle Arts Museum at the University of Calgary for six years.
Joane Cardinal-Schubert has received many awards, scholarships, and Canada Council grants for her work. In 1985 she became the fourth Albertan woman to be inducted into the Royal Canadian Academy. She was also awarded the Commemorative Medal of Canada in 1993 for her contribution to the Arts, and in 2007 was awarded a National Aboriginal Achievement Award. She is an advocate for Native artists and has inspired and enabled Native artists to challenge and reclaim their creative identities. Her work explores themes of identity and spirituality, and critically examines Euro-American religious and governmental systems.