Full Time Positions

The Brown Foundation Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art - FT

Department: Curatorial

San Antonio Museum of Art seeks an experienced, dynamic curator with a passion for presenting art for the position of Brown Foundation Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art. The Brown Foundation Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art will be part of a curatorial division comprised of five curators and a support staff, working to advance the individual collecting areas of the Museum, as well as the unified goals of the overall department for the benefit of the Museum’s visitors.

San Antonio Museum of Art is located north of downtown San Antonio on a beautiful campus located on the Museum Reach of the city’s famous Riverwalk. San Antonio is currently the 7th largest city in the U.S. with a rich cultural history stretching back 300 years. Robust economic growth and rapidly growing population make San Antonio one of the nation’s top “brain gain” cities.

The San Antonio Museum of Art traces its beginnings to the San Antonio Museum Association, which was chartered in 1925. The Museum possesses approximately 2500 works of contemporary art in all media, including new media. Important holdings in mid-20th century work include Helen Frankenthaler, Philip Guston, Hans Hofmann, Frank Stella, and Richard Diebenkorn. Recent contemporary acquisitions include work by Kehinde Wiley, Grayson Perry, Ivan Navarro, and Willie Cole. In addition, the collection is especially reflective of San Antonio’s vibrant community of living artists.

Overview of Responsibilities:

The Curator will be responsible for San Antonio Museum of Art’s collection of modern and contemporary art in all media, including but not limited to, collection research, acquisitions, interpretation, installation and exhibitions.

Supervisory Responsibilities:

Co-supervises (with Curator of European Art) Curatorial Administrative Assistant for Modern, Contemporary, and European Art; interns and other staff assigned as needed

Reports to:

Chief Curator/The Marie and Hugh Halff Curator of American Art

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

The functions and responsibilities listed below are those that represent the majority of time spent working in this job. Management may assign additional essential functions and responsibilities related to the type of work of the job as necessary.

  • Responsible for the focused growth of the department’s collection, through strategic acquisitions, both gifts and purchases, as well as loans. Recommend and prioritizes important acquisitions, as well as identifies objects for deaccession that do not meet the standards of the collection.
  • Conduct ongoing research and propose/organize exhibitions of contemporary art for national and/or international tour that advance the Museum’s mission, vision, and strategic direction. Collaborate with other curators to identify and manage exhibitions from other departments and institutions.
  • Manage Visiting Committee of Modern and Contemporary Art and provide programs and stewardship for museum support groups and selected major donors.
  • Work with the Director, Chief Curator and senior staff to cultivate trustees, collectors, donors, and artists for gifts to the collection, acquisition funds, program support, and capital support. Participate in fundraising events; organize travel opportunities for selected donors and trustees.
  • Regularly network with peers nationally and internationally to develop collection exchanges, co-organize exhibitions, and tour Museum-originated projects.
  • Perform other duties as assigned within the scope of responsibility and requirements of the position.
  • Travel both nationally and internationally in order to represent the Museum’s modern and contemporary program to the local, regional, national, and international art communities.
  • Working with the Education department, devise interpretative strategies for understanding the collections, through labels and other media. In addition, work with other departments to devise a calendar of lectures, symposia, and other programs for all audience levels to complement the Museum’s modern and contemporary program.
  • Research the Museum’s collections of modern and contemporary art, both permanent collection and proposed additions to the collection, to add to the body of knowledge and, when appropriate, for publications.
  • Revise collections plan for growth of modern and contemporary collection, including initiating de-accessioning research.
  • Work with the Exhibits and Collections departments to re-imagine and re-install permanent collection galleries of modern and contemporary art, to provide maximum art historical and aesthetic clarity and coherence.
  • Collaborate with guest curators and artists on project-based installations and programs.

Supportive Functions and Responsibilities:

The functions and responsibilities listed below are required as they support the essential functions and responsibilities listed above. Management may assign additional supportive functions and responsibilities related to the type of work of the job as necessary.

  • Must be able to prioritize and delegate work as needed.
  • Must communicate effectively with all levels of management and staff.
  • Maintain high standards of professional etiquette.
  • Have working knowledge of all museum operation procedures.
  • Routinely report accurate financial and performance data to the Director, Chief Curator and other management as needed.
  • Attend any required meetings or training as required by Management.
  • Must be able to use standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, filing cabinets, scanners and fax machines.
  • Follow and enforce all San Antonio Museum of Art policies, including but not limited to, the Museum’s attendance policy, which requires predictable attendance at the museum in order to meet all essential and supportive functions and responsibilities of this job.

Physical Demands and Requirements:

  • This is largely a sedentary role; however, some filing is required. This would require the ability to lift files, open filing cabinets and bend or stand as necessary.

Formal Education and Job Requirements:

  • Minimum M.A. in art history or other related area; Ph.D. preferred
  • Five years or more of professional curatorial experience
  • Established record in organizing major traveling art exhibitions
  • Established record of building collections, through gifts, purchases and loans
  • Excellent organizational, written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to develop constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, in all departments and all levels of responsibility, with collegiality, grace and humor
  • Proven abilities in donor cultivation and relations
  • Established network of national and international contacts, including dealers, galleries, curators, artists and other museum colleagues
  • Must be authorized to work for any employer in the United States of America
  • Must be able to authorize and satisfy Museum requirements of a background search and investigation, which may include, among other items, criminal background information, confirmation of educational and employment history, and confirmation of any professional references provided

This job involves a significant amount of contact with Museum staff, board, volunteers, and the public that may be of a sensitive or confidential nature. Discretion and sound judgment is required. All staff must be able to relate well to individuals with a variety of backgrounds and be able to positively represent the Museum.

The position is full-time salaried position and eligible for the museum’s benefit package.

San Antonio Museum of Art is an equal opportunity employer.

Applications should include the following: a cover letter that includes the applicant’s interest in the position; a statement, not to exceed two pages, about the applicant’s research and interest in curating the Museum’s collection; examples of writing and publication; curriculum vitae; and names of three professional references.

Applications should be submitted to:

Elda Martinez
Human Resources Manager
San Antonio Museum of Art
200 West Jones Avenue
San Antonio, TX 78215