Curator Of African Art
Reports To:Chief Curator
Please include a cover letter when applying for this position.
The High Museum of Art seeks an experienced and innovative curator with expertise in African art. Under the supervision of the Chief Curator, the Curator of African art will oversee all aspects of the Museum’s curatorial program for African art, including a collection of nearly 1,200 works from ancient to contemporary. Highlights of the collection include exceptional examples of sculpture, masks, textiles, metalwork, and ceramics largely from West and Central Africa, major works by Asante and Yoruba artists, as well recent works by artists including El Anatsui, Magdalene Odundo, and Nandipha Mntambo. The broad nature of the collection and the High’s collaborative approach affords the new Curator an opportunity to chart new areas of growth as well as partner with regional, national, and international colleagues in developing the Museum’s African art program.
In addition to a dedicated interest in and knowledge of African art, the preferred candidate will bring a balance of expertise, creativity, and organizational skills to the wider responsibilities of the position.
- Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include the following:
- Coordinating with the Chief Curator, plan and manage the development of the African art collections, exhibitions, and related curatorial programs.
- Develop and manage important, creative exhibition projects in the field, including the organization of major collaborative projects with national and international participants.
- Research information pertinent to the identification, documentation, or authentication of works of art and develop appropriate object records in accordance with current professional standards.
- Conceive, develop, and publish exhibition catalogues, scholarly articles, and related works, including via digital formats.
- Maintain current knowledge of the international art market and conceive and pursue strategic objectives of gifts, bequests, and purchases to develop and refine the African art holdings in accordance with international law, museum standards and ethics.
- Regularly and effectively communicate and work with museum staff, trustees, colleagues, and others to enrich, expand, and otherwise facilitate the program of African art and to ensure that related content is accurately conveyed and represented.
- Work with collections staff and the Atlanta Art Conservation Center to anticipate collections care and conservation needs for respective holdings.
- Work collaboratively with education and interpretation staff to develop and produce interpretive strategies and accompanying materials for collections-based projects and special exhibitions, as well as conduct training for docents and provide new opportunities for community outreach.
- In conjunction with program staff and others, help develop and participate in public programs on the collection and relevant special exhibitions.
- Propose and lead programs for the museum’s Friends of African Art support group and otherwise foster and maintain good working relationships with existing and potential patrons, trustees, and museum colleagues across the country and abroad, as well as with the academic community, art dealers, and collectors.
- As needed, serve as a mentor to Mellon Fellows, assistants, and interns.
- Train and serve as a designated museum art courier as necessary.
- Respond to scholarly and public inquiries related to the collection.
- Represent the museum in professional associations and at symposia and other scholarly meetings and events.
- Meet all responsibilities with the highest ethical and professional standards.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE:
- M.A. required; Ph.D. strongly preferred; degree in art history, anthropology or equivalent studies.
- Minimum of five years of curatorial experience and knowledge of museum practices.
- Expertise with exhibition development and organization, including both national and international collaborations.
- Strong record of research, scholarship, and public speaking, with proven experience in organizing significant exhibitions and publications.
- Familiarity with new technologies and their impact upon the field.
SKILLS AND ABILITIES:
- Exhibits effective communication, organizational and time-management skills.
- Must be resourceful, creative, flexible, and have the ability to work effectively and positively with other professional staff across multiple divisions in a highly collaborative environment.
- Must be committed to engaging diverse audiences in innovative and exciting ways.
Physical Demands/Work Environment:
The work environment and physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Some standing, walking, bending, frequent use of hands, stooping and light lifting (at least 10 pounds) is needed.
- The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.