JOB: Curator, Folk and Self-Taught Art @ Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

At a transformational moment for our Art of the Americas program, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, seeks a creative, energetic and dynamic curator and scholar to become the inaugural Linde Curator of Folk and Self-Taught Art. Reporting to the Chair of the Art of the Americas, the Linde Curator will partner with the Katharine Lane Weems Senior Curator of Decorative Arts and Sculpture, and with colleagues in the Department of Learning and Community Engagement to lead the MFA’s newly launched folk art initiative, an ambitious new program designed to reimagine and reanimate the folk art collections for 21st-century audiences. The Linde Curator will have the opportunity to build a dynamic and experimental suite of exhibitions, installations, programs and displays that will reshape the institution’s commitment to folk and self-taught material, and align the display and interpretation of this material with the MFA’s larger strategic vision. A true thought leader, the ideal candidate will galvanize colleagues across the department and around the museum in thinking anew about the categories of folk and self-taught art, and in envisioning new ways to make this material accessible, relevant and important to the lives of our visitors today.

The Museum of Fine Arts has an impressive collection of American folk art, broadly defined, with notable strength in works made in the northeastern United States in the 18th and 19th centuries. Highlights include important paintings by Erastus Salisbury Field, William Matthew Prior, and Rufus Porter, nearly 350 works on paper from the Karolik collection, a significant collection of American quilts, and select examples of painted furniture and sculptural forms. Opportunities for growth include historical American art that enhances and complements the Karolik collection with a focus on artists of diverse ethnic, racial, socio-economic, and geographical background, as well as 20th and 21st century art by self-taught, Outsider and Visionary artists.

Candidate Profile:

Minimum Qualifications and Experience:

  • A Master’s or PhD in Art History, history or related field with a proven focus on Folk, Self-taught and Visionary material.
  • Three to five years of experience in a museum or comparable institution.
  • Demonstrated curatorial ability through culturally-meaningful exhibitions, gallery displays, programs or other activities.
  • Demonstrated experience and a strong interest in working in a museum setting.

Ideal Candidate Profile: 

  • Committed to researching, caring for and interpreting Folk and Self Taught art for diverse audiences, and to thinking about this material in new ways.
  • Demonstrated experience contributing to/leading exhibitions, programs and projects developed in collaboration with artists, visitors, community leaders, and other scholars and experts.
  • A breadth of knowledge and experience, as well as a willingness to gain expertise in new areas. An interest in and commitment to exploring the changing nature of art museums and their relationship to the public.
  • A national perspective but experienced in becoming personally and professionally committed to the city of Boston, its people and artistic community.
  • Experience working closely and building relationships with colleagues in a museum setting.
  • Experience working in partnership and engaging with donors, collectors, scholars, external communities and other partners.
  • Strong planning and project management skills with the ability to manage various projects simultaneously and to collaborate with colleagues across the institution to achieve the best outcome.
  • Strong sense of accountability for achieving stated objectives.
  • Team-oriented and collaborative.
  • Superb presentation and interpretation skills with ability to attract and engage audiences of all demographics.
  • Superior ability to present and defend ideas and projects that earn the respect of colleagues and Museum’s leadership and builds credibility for the department and institution. 

Personal Qualities and Attributes

  • Intellectually rigorous 
  • Inspirational, passionate, curious 
  • Generous of spirit, a team player 
  • Superior judgment, tact and diplomacy, with good organizational skills 

Salary Range:

Full-Time Salary, 35 hours per week

Starting salary: $73,000 – $78,000 

The MFA is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer that is committed to building a culturally diverse staff and strongly encourages applications from diverse candidates.

Link to apply: https://bit.ly/3zYMORb?

FEL: Luce Curatorial Fellowship @ Smithsonian American Art Museum

Application deadline: June 1, 2021

The Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) seeks an outstanding emerging scholar of American art for a curatorial fellowship funded by the Henry Luce Foundation. Beginning in fall 2021, this two-year position, with a possible third-year renewal, will provide an invaluable professional development opportunity to a scholar interested in a curatorial career in an art museum. It will also support scholarly research on SAAM’s permanent collection, one of the largest and most inclusive collections of American art in the world. The selected fellow will work under the supervision of a senior curator and in collaboration with a team of staff from various departments. The appointee will develop practical skills in all four areas of curatorial practice: research, installation and exhibition development, collections management and planning, and public service. He or she will also participate fully in the intellectual life of the museum’s Research and Scholars Center, home of its research fellowship program and journal, American Art.

DUTIES
Under the guidance of the supervisory curator, the Luce Curatorial Fellow will take a key role in the reconceptualization and reinstallation of works from the collection in thematically organized sections of SAAM’s Luce Foundation Center for American Art, the only visible art storage and study center in Washington, D.C. The rehang of the Luce Foundation Center will build on overarching concepts in the museum’s 2022–2023 reinstallation (currently in development) and illuminate connections among artists, artworks, and different facets of the collection. The appointee will research artists and artworks, rectify outdated or inaccurate records, write interpretive texts, and conduct audio/video recordings and/or offer tours to further support these installations. They will work with conservation, design, and installation staff to evaluate requirements and limitations of artworks within specific spaces and execute planned installations. The fellow also will have the opportunity to collaborate with museum interpretation and education staff to address diverse audiences and formats. The appointee may assist project-related development efforts and also propose speaking engagements or public presentations related to their research findings. In the second or third year, the fellow will have the opportunity to propose an installation for the galleries, an online exhibition, or a touring show.

QUALIFICATIONS
The ideal candidate will demonstrate scholarly excellence and promise in addition to a strong interest in a museum career. A PhD in art history within the last five years is preferred; however, the fellowship is open to individuals with other academic specialties, such as African American and Women’s Studies. Applications are requested from scholars whose interests and areas of expertise align with one of the museum’s collection strengths:

  • 19th-Century Art: The reinstallation of the permanent collection will necessitate the re-envisioning of the Luce Foundation Center’s display of 18th and 19th-century American art. The goals are to use the Luce Center as an extension and expansion of themes central to the reconceptualized galleries and to explore additional themes and constellations of significant artworks. The fellow will be a full participant in the curatorial discussions of those themes, interfacing with curators responsible for 20th century, modern and contemporary holdings as needed, and conducting in-depth research on individual artworks, artists, and historical frameworks associated with their area of expertise. Those areas can fall anywhere within the range of 19th-century art from the Federal period through the Gilded Age.
  • Folk and Self-Taught Art: Since 1970, when it acquired and first exhibited James Hampton’s The Throne of the Third Heaven of the Nations’ Millennium General Assembly, the Smithsonian American Art Museum has been acknowledged as a leader in recognizing and repositioning folk and self-taught artists and their important contributions to American art. SAAM’s collection became internationally known in 1986 with the acquisition of the Herbert Waide Hemphill collection and has grown exponentially since 2012 when the museum hired its first full-time curator specializing in this area. Within the area of folk and self-taught art, and reaching into the broader collection as needed, the Luce Curatorial Fellow may focus on frameworks including but not limited to era, region, type of practice, and cultural significance, or consider a particular artist or cultural group in depth. The appointee will also assist on the exhibition project Amish Quilts from the Faith and Stephen Brown Collection, opening in Spring 2024.

HOW TO APPLY
The fellowship is categorized as a term trust position (IS-9, not-to-exceed three years) with a starting salary of $60,129 plus benefits and an allowance for research and conference travel. The Smithsonian offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, vacation and sick leave, holidays, and health insurance.

Applications must be received by Tuesday, June 1, and include:

  • A cover letter outlining the candidate’s interest in the fellowship
  • A statement of 750 to 1,000 words that describes the applicant’s area of research and how it relates to one of the two areas of curatorial focus outlined above
  • A published paper or other writing sample
  • Curriculum vitae with two references

Please submit applications to SAAMFellowships@si.edu.

All applications will be reviewed by a committee comprised of the chief curator, deputy chief curator, mentoring curator, and chair of academic programs. The fellowship must begin by December 31, 2021.

SAAM believes that recruiting and maintaining an equitable, inclusive, and diverse staff is critical to our mission. We welcome and encourage applications from qualified persons of color; who are Indigenous; with disabilities; who are LGBTQIA+; who are veterans; and/or with other underrepresented backgrounds and experiences. The Smithsonian does not discriminate on grounds of race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation, and pregnancy), national origin, age, or disability.

JOB: Folk and Traditional Arts Director @ NEA

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), a federal agency based in Washington D.C. is seeking to fill the position of Folk and Traditional Arts Director, GS-0301-15, in the Office Programs and Partnerships, Multidisciplinary Arts Division.

·         This position opened Friday, February 19, 2015 and will close on Wednesday, March 18, 2015.
·         This position is open to all qualified U.S. citizens.
·         Folk and Traditional Arts Director Announcement number: NEA-AGr-15-1308013 (EX)

In addition, the links below will provide information on how to apply for federal positions as well as utilize USA Staffing.  All vacancy announcements also have a “How to apply” section that provides instructions on how to apply using USA Jobs.

·         Frequently Asked Questions  — REVIEW the HOW DO  I APPLY FOR FEDERAL POSITIONS
·         USA Jobs How to Apply

All questions regarding this announcement should be directed to Ms. Anita Green, greena@arts.gov, 202-682-5472