Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs

The Museum of Contemporary Art

Los Angeles, CA


Working under the supervision of the Museum Director, the Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs oversees the creative and administrative responsibilities for the museum's curatorial department; including exhibition planning, research, organization, and presentation, collection development, interpretation, and stewardship, as well as the direction and realization of all curatorial publications. The Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs works with the Director and designated Board Committees to carry out the institution's overall objectives in the areas of programs and acquisitions. Of primary importance is the ability to implement a dynamic and well-balanced program, with appropriate emphasis across all disciplines and geographic boundaries from 1945 to the present. The Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs also provides leadership and professional training/opportunities for all members of the curatorial staff. The Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs also participates in the development of funding sources for acquisitions, exhibitions, and other special programs.


Minimum of at least ten years' experience in curatorial affairs and administration in a major art institution, with an emphasis on contemporary painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, architecture, performance, and video, as well as acquisitions and collections management. MA required in art history, museum studies, or related field. Demonstrated leadership ability and excellent written and verbal communication skills required.

Essential Functions:

• Serves on senior management team to develop strategic plan, ensure that curatorial vision is cohesive across museum programming, and advance short and long-term museum goals.
• Conceptualize and implement comprehensive exhibition and permanent collection programs to broaden and strengthen the museum's local, national, and international audience, working closely with the Director and with other museum departments.
• Assist the Director and work with curatorial department staff on all acquisition efforts, including research, leadership and growth of all acquisition committee groups, oversee the cultivation of individual donors, foundations and institutional partners to obtain new and important acquisitions for the museum.
• Help to maintain the museum's position of vitality, responsiveness, and integrity in the community and commitment to the overall goals, as articulated by the Director and Trustees pertaining to the museum's programs and collections. Develop and maintain effective relationships with the community of artists, dealers, critics, museum colleagues, collectors, trustees, and friends of the museum; encourage the development of private collectors who may enhance potential museum holdings; provide professional counsel and leadership to museum supporters.
• Initiate and pursue opportunities to strengthen the museum’s community relations through on-going studio, gallery, performance, museum, and collector visits.
• In conjunction with the Education department, develop effective interpretive programming for the public, especially as it pertains to exhibitions, public programs, and lectures.
• Work closely with the Museum's Advancement department to identify potential sources of funding, cultivate donors and relationships with foundations and grant officers to support exhibitions and select projects.
• In collaboration with the Communications department, oversee all creative aspects of publications, including exhibition and permanent collection catalogues, gallery guides, didactic labels, and exhibition-related brochures. Work closely with the museum store to develop exhibition related merchandise as appropriate to given situations.
• In conjunction with the Communications department, help to design and implement appropriate outreach and public information efforts surrounding both temporary exhibitions and the permanent collection.
• Collaborate with the Senior Director of Exhibitions and Collections in the scheduling, planning, budgeting, logistical arrangements, and installation of all exhibitions.
• Supervise senior members of the curatorial staff and select other department staff, develop performance standards for the department; manage hiring, training, coaching, and performance management of curatorial staff; oversee workload and priority-setting of all curatorial staff.
• Foster a culture of trust, collaboration, mutual respect, and teamwork within the Curatorial department, as well as cross-departmentally throughout the institution.
• Actively mentor curatorial staff and support their professional development and growth while holding team members accountable.
• Draft and administer department general operating budget.
• Ensure that curatorial initiatives are being carried out in alignment with the institution’s DEI&A values.
• Perform other tasks and duties as assigned.

Please submit your resume and cover letter to [email protected] with the subject line "Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs" by 1/21/2022. Research shows that women and individuals from underrepresented backgrounds often apply to jobs only if they meet 100% of the qualifications. We recognize that it is highly unlikely that an applicant meets 100% of the qualifications for a given role. Therefore, if much of this job description describes you, then you are highly encouraged to apply for this role.

The Museum of Contemporary Art is an equal opportunity employer. We will extend equal opportunity to all individuals without regard to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation, military status, veteran status or any other status protected under applicable federal, state or local laws. Our policy reflects and affirms the Museum of Contemporary Art’s commitment to the principles of fair employment and the elimination of all discriminatory practices.


$200,000-$230,000 Health/dental/vision insurance, PTO, life insurance, 401k, and more

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