August 25, 2016, by Franziska Koch
Job opportunity: interim Curator of Asian Art, The Smart Museum, University of Chicago, USA
Interim Curator of Asian Art
The Smart Museum is currently conducting an international search for a new Director. This full-time interim curatorial position has been created for approximately twelve months beginning as soon as possible and continuing through Fall 2017.
The Interim Curator of Asian Art will serve as a coordinating curator for previously planned exhibitions and will be primarily responsible for the annual reinstallation of the Museum’s permanent collection. In collaboration with other museum colleagues, s/he will work closely with faculty, guest curators, and students to support, encourage, and develop related public programs for exhibitions and collection installations that strengthen the Museum’s engagement with Asian art.
As a member of the Smart Museum’s highly collaborative collections, exhibitions and education team, the interim curator has primary responsibility for the coordination of exhibitions, collection installations, research, and publications in this key area of the Smart Museum’s collection. In addition, working with the Smart’s Curator and Associate Director of Academic Initiatives, the curator encourages curricular and co-curricular collaboration with the Departments of Art History, Visual Arts and others whose content expertise aligns with Asian exhibition projects and collection installations. Reporting to the Interim Director of the Smart Museum (or his designee), the Interim Asian Art Curator works in close partnership with the other members of the collections, exhibition and education team.
As coordinating curator, work closely with faculty, guest curators, students, and other Smart Museum colleagues to support, encourage, and develop exhibitions, collections installations, and related public programs that strengthen the Museum’s engagement with Asian art.
As a member of the Smart Museum’s highly collaborative collections, exhibitions and education team (CEE), the Interim modern curator has primary responsibility for directing exhibition, collections installations, research, publication activities and acquisitions in this key area of the Smart Museum’s collection.
Encourage curricular and co-curricular collaboration with the Departments of Art History, Visual Arts and others whose content expertise aligns with the Asian art exhibition projects and collection installations.
Develop and manage Exhibition budgets.
Serve as a member of the Smart Museum’s staff and assist with various programs and projects. This includes coordination with colleagues across UChicago Arts, representing the Smart Museum on various arts-related committees both within the University and beyond, and other duties as assigned.
The ideal candidate must possess:
A familiarity with both traditional and contemporary Asian art, with experience working in Chinese, Japanese, or Korean art
Eagerness to work within the unique environment of a research university such as the University of Chicago, where a commitment to rigorous debate, field-changing research, and boundary-breaking collaborations is fundamental.
At least two (2) years of progressively more responsible experience working in art museums on a part-time or full-time basis.
A graduate degree in Art History or a related field or equivalent relevant experience required, Ph.D. desirable.
A record of work on innovative research and exhibitions.
Dedication to the care and stewardship of artworks and knowledge of conservation issues
Exceptional organizational skills required. Must be able to oversee complex projects and schedules, maintain deadlines, establish and work within budgets, with the ability to set priorities and manage several projects simultaneously required. Ability to successfully manage a workload that balances long-range planning with the unanticipated daily demands of art exhibition spaces required.
Familiarity with the full range of current issues in museum practice particularly as they affect the acquisition, exhibition, and interpretation of traditional and contemporary Asian art
An ability to speak, read, and write in English required and Chinese and/or Korean and/or Japanese preferred.
A substantial commitment to collaboration of all types, with museum colleagues, students, faculty, and external partners
Comfort in establishing positive and effective relationships with internal and external communities, including major donors and collectors, board members, artists, members of the press, art dealers, professionals at other institutions, faculty, students, and the public required
Excellent written and spoken communication skills with the ability to synthesize and accurately present relevant information required.
Knowledge of database management software preferred
Willingness and ability to work occasional evenings and weekends as required.
Organizational and human relations skills with ability to collaborate well and supportively and cultivate good relationships with colleagues within the Museum and its many collaborators.
The temperament to work with a diverse and demanding population is expected.
Must be self-directed and self-motivated, able to set goals and develop projects.
Clear, effective, and tactful oral and written communication skills; ability to handle sensitive information with discretion.
Ability to prioritize and execute multiple tasks simultaneously with an ability to view a project in its entirety.
The successful oversight of exhibition installations in a 10,000 square foot set of galleries requires the ability to conduct regular building rounds.
Considerable office work.
Ability to occasionally travel out of town.
Submit resume and cover letter via jobopportunities.uchicago.edu (search requisition #101170).
Coordinator of Academic Initiatives
Smart Museum of Art
The University of Chicago
5550 S. Greenwood Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637