This position is now CLOSED.

Title: Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art

Position: Department of Curatorial Affairs and Education

Type of Position: Full Time

Reports to: Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs and Education

The Associate Curator will work with the Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs to research, acquire, and interpret the Museum’s collection of Modern and Contemporary art, which includes approximately 7,000 works of art in various media, from American Art to European Art after 1900, and Contemporary Art from all cultures. The Associate Curator must be an accomplished professional in the field of Modern and Contemporary Art, with a record of distinguished scholarship, publications, acquisitions, and exhibitions.

The Associate Curator is responsible for:

Curating displays and assisting with the installation of the collection in the galleries; curating and organizing exhibitions for the Museum, and for touring domestically and abroad.

Conducting research and writing on the collection that will result in publication in a variety of formats including the Museum app and website. The Associate Curator will write and proofread catalog essays, wall texts, labels, and contribute to the Museum’s magazine.

Reviewing and researching requests for loans from the collection and advising the Deputy Director and Curatorial Committee accordingly in collaboration with the Registrars

Researching potential gifts to the Museum to ensure that the object fits with the collection, is in good condition and has a solid provenance. The Associate Curator will comply with due diligence standards in accordance with AAM (American Alliance of Museums) guidelines.

Refining the collection and making recommendations for acquisitions and deaccessions

The Associate Curator works in close collaboration with the Museum’s Education, Membership and Development teams in order to develop opportunities for interpretative materials and programming about the collection and to secure funding for those projects.

The Associate Curator works well independently as well as collaborates effectively with the Deputy Director, Curatorial department, Installation team, Registrars, Designers, Librarian and all other staff and docents of the Museum as well as with representatives of other Museums and external collections.

In addition the Associate Curator will:

Provide lectures and tours to staff, docents, Museum members and the public.

Be a good public speaker and communicate effectively with the press.

Liaise with relevant support councils and attend their meetings and functions as appropriate, and ensure that the support councils are aware of and able to support the Museum program.

Attend Museum events and collection visits out of hours as necessary and be an effective liaison for Museum donors, as well as an Ambassador for the Museum when travelling.

Contribute to the scholarship in his/her field; regularly publish within their field of expertise; participate in national and international conferences and symposia

Accompany works of art as needed for couriering loans and assist with condition reporting and installations as required.

Supervise Museum interns and work experience assistants as may be required.

Will ensure that exhibition and publication deadlines are met and that their work is effectively prioritized, dealt with in a calm manner and delivered to a professional standard at all times.

The Associate Curator will perform any other duties as may be required.


  • Ph.D. in Art History preferred;
  • Demonstrated expertise in one or more of the following areas: European Art after 1900, American Art and/or Contemporary Art.
  • 5 years’ experience in a curatorial role in a museum, or equivalent experience in the arts commercial sector or academia
  • Record of publications, fellowships, and public speaking;
  • Passion for the role of visual arts and for developing new audiences;
  • Experience with Collections databases such as EmbARK, TMS, Argus, etc
  • Experience in donor cultivation;
  • Excellent communications skills;
  • Eagerness to work collaboratively and in an innovative manner;
  • Demonstrated knowledge of European languages, European and American history and literature;
  • Proficiency in at least one foreign language related to field of study


Position open for application: April 12–June 1, 2018

If interested, please submit cover letter, writing sample and resume to:  or submit to The San Diego Museum of Art, Human Resources, P.O. Box 122107, San Diego, CA  92112.

The San Diego Museum of Art is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in the hiring of personnel on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, gender, age, Vietnam Era Veteran or disable veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, disability or any other protected status as provided by law.