Curator Job Description Template

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Skilled curators know how to research, acquire, organize, catalog, and display collections. Whether your organization brings Renaissance art, antique books, or rare plants to your local community or an international audience, the first step to finding great-fit candidates is to create a curator job description.

Edit this template to find experienced curators who are just as comfortable working independently as they are collaborating with colleagues and other organizations to grow your business. Also, browse Monster’s curator job listings to learn more about how other galleries and museums attract top talent in your field.

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Curator Job Description

[Intro Paragraph] Your first paragraph should describe the position and the type of curator your organization is looking for. This helps qualified candidates get an immediate sense of whether the position is a good fit and encourages them to learn more about your open position and company.

Use this example as a jumping-off point:

Our organization specializes in [area of expertise] and is looking for an independent, self-motivated curator to lead our [curator specialty] collections. We are looking to add a dedicated, collaborative collector with experience researching, acquiring, cataloging, and displaying exhibitions for a public or private audience. If you are a creative, compassionate leader with strong project management skills and a can-do attitude, we’d love to meet you!

About Our Organization: The next section of your curator job description should detail why your organization is a great place to work. Many of the curators browsing jobs want to land at a company that not only values their work and contributions but also takes the time to foster a healthy work culture.

Use a couple sentences to describe your company culture and how you support your employees and the community, such as whether you provide career advancement and mentorship opportunities and donate some proceeds to charity.

If your organization specializes in a specific field of study, such as paleontology or digital art, include it here as well. This way, you’ll have an easier time finding qualified candidates since the curators you attract will likely know more about whether they are suited for your open position and work environment.

Curator Job Responsibilities: Curators oversee a range of tasks. They coordinate everything from the project ideation to execution, marketing, and PR. Edit this list of common responsibilities to flesh out your curator job description:

  • Brainstorm and solidify new collection ideas that support and expand upon current educational and research needs.
  • Collaborate with coworkers, peers, and other organizations to research and acquire the pieces necessary to complete the display.
  • Coordinate the appropriate restoration needs for items that need to be preserved.
  • Keep careful track of inventory and catalog each piece, gathering necessary information about the item’s origin, purpose, and value to the collection.
  • Write descriptions of the item that educate and delight a wide range of exhibit and website visitors.
  • Oversee the exhibit installation and deinstallation from start to finish, including staffing needs, installation design, building instruction, and marketing efforts.
  • Negotiate with investors to secure the necessary funds (whether by donation or loan) to research the exhibit, purchase or loan the necessary pieces, and build the display.
  • Ensure proper storage and restoration techniques are met, such as temperature and humidity, to preserve items for both short- and long-term display.
  • Organize exhibit events by securing food, entertainment, and vendors.
  • Hire and train junior curating staff.
  • Represent the organization online and at public events.
  • Consult the board of directors to ensure policies, budgets, time constraints, and expectations are met.

[Work Hours and Benefits] After listing the responsibilities, include information about the hours you need the curator to work. For example, will your curators be working full or part-time? Is it a contract position or permanent? Will part of their job be to travel, work overnight, or come into the museum on weekends? Be as specific as possible so candidates can get a sense of the schedule and pace of the position.

Next, include information about the benefits and perks you offer. This shows the candidate how your organization makes their efforts worthwhile. For example, share whether you provide health insurance, vision and dental care, and programs that help support their personal lives, such as commuting or wellness stipends.

Curator Qualifications and Skills: When listing your curator job description qualifications and skills, be sure to include a detailed list of what you’re looking for. If some skills are must-haves, say so. This will help you attract only the candidates who are qualified for the role. Examples include:

  • Possesses exceptional project management skills and plans and executes the creation of exhibits.
  • Uses written and verbal communication skills to promote exhibits and the organization through collaboration with the marketing and PR teams.
  • Exhibits strong interpersonal skills and the ability to network with a wide range of colleagues, board members, investors, and other organizations.
  • Demonstrates time-management skills and the ability to juggle multiple tasks, such as financial planning, clerical work, hiring and training staff, and writing detailed records and publications.
  • Ensures quality control and follows through on the proper preservation measures.

Education, Experience, and Licensing Requirements:

  • A bachelor’s or master’s degree in [specialized field of study] or related professional experience.
  • 5+ years’ experience curating exhibits in a similar role.
  • 3+ years’ experience in fundraising, researching, and publishing in the academic space.

[Call to Action] Before the candidate gets to the end of your job description, they should know what steps to take next. This is where your call to action comes in. A simple “apply here” or “learn more” should get them to the next phase of the application process. The last thing you want is for qualified candidates to walk away without knowing how to get in touch, so make sure their next steps are clear.

Find Your Next Great Curator

Talented curators will help your organization create beautiful exhibits and reach a wider audience through education and intrigue. Now that you’ve edited this curator job description template, you’re ready to attract great-fit candidates for your open position. Start your search for curators today with a free job posting on Monster.