Assistant Curator – Broad Art Museum, Michigan State University

Position Summary: The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University seeks candidates for the position of Assistant Curator.  Opened in 2012 at Michigan State University and designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Zaha Hadid, MSU Broad has emerged as a leading university museum devoted to the presentation and study of contemporary art and socially engaged exhibitions. This position will assist in conception, budgeting, research, development, planning, production, implementation, and interpretation of both collection-based and temporary exhibitions that explore the museum collections through the lens of diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion (DEAI).

The Assistant Curator assists the Senior Curator and Museum Director in lead museum exhibitions, curates collection exhibitions, and functions as program manager for assigned projects by preparing checklists, budgets, publications, installing exhibits, fundraising, giving tours, and participating in all other tasks related to creation and implementation of museum exhibitions and their accompanying curatorial programs. The Assistant Curator acts as spokesperson for the museum creating strong connections with network of peers and national and international artists. This position plays a vital role in the creation of exhibitions that ask challenging questions through engagement with art, community stakeholder expertise, and MSU faculty contributions.

The successful candidate will have deep understanding of the field of contemporary art and its current trends, a wide range of art historical interests and experience working with collections. This position will be responsible for disseminating the resources of the BROAD Art Museum to colleges, faculty, staff, students, key community stakeholders, and general public.

Characteristic Duties/Responsibilities

  • Reporting to the Senior Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs
  • Assists with conception, research, development, planning, interpretation, and production of museum exhibitions; both MSU BROAD and touring exhibitions
  • Organizes and produces collection-based and special exhibitions of their own conception and in collaboration with the curatorial team
  • Organizes and produces curatorial-centric public programs including artist lectures, scholars’ panels, community-driven events,
  • Responsible for disseminating the resources of the Broad Art Museum to colleges, faculty, staff, students, and general public
  • Fulfills the role of project manager on select exhibitions to lead a team of co-workers drawn from a variety of museum areas
  • Shares information and resources in an effective, efficient, and timely fashion team of co-workers
  • Assists in hiring and supervising student workers
  • Works closely with the museum Registrar in upkeep of the collection, creating and maintaining a strategic collecting plan, and supporting the acquisitions process
  • Works with the Senior Curator, Curators, and Registrar in coordination of the Acquisitions Committee to research and propose strategic acquisitions including research and compilation of biographies, chronologies, and exhibition histories, and specific documentation of individual works
  • Supports the development and production of catalogues and publications in conjunction with lead exhibitions, assisting with the collating of texts and images, images rights and reproductions, and contributing to discussions around publication design
  • Provide educational information including didactic materials, docent talks, tours, lectures, etc.
  • Maintain relationships and acts as spokesperson with the art community, local as well as national and international stakeholders, including artists, collectors, and prospective donors; represents museum in public eye
  • Fundraises through donor cultivation and the writing of grants
  • Handles art as necessary

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement: All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or protected veteran status.

Required Degree: Masters -Museum Studies or related disciplines

Desired Degree: Doctorate – Curatorial Practices, Art History, Museum Studies, Social Justice or other related discipline

Minimum Requirements

  • Master’s degree in Curatorial Practices, Art History, Museum Studies, Social Justice or other related discipline, or equivalent professional experience.
  • At least 5 years of museum/gallery experience; curatorial experience working on solo, group, and collection-based exhibitions; and knowledge of project management best practices. 

Desired Qualifications

  • Experience working in the university context with faculty and students from a wide range of disciplines, as well as the use of a variety of university collections
  • Experience working with community stakeholders and proficient knowledge of DEAI museum strategies
  • Experience with art handling
  • Strong writing and research skills, with a record of authoring and publishing original content, as well as public speaking and remarkable communication skills
  • Outstanding project management skills
  • Knowledge of the field of contemporary art and its current trends, a wide range of art historical interests, and experience working with collections. Ability to work effectively under pressure and meet deadlines
  • Knowledge of DEAI museum practices and experience working with diverse key community stakeholders
  • Outstanding organizational and project management skills: ability to prioritize and organize multiple activities, as well as supervise the activities of staff members around a common project
  • Ability to deal effectively and diplomatically with donors, artists, Museum staff, colleagues, and the general public, whether in person, on the telephone, or in writing
  • Strong writing and research skills, with a record of authoring and publishing original content, as well as public speaking and communication skills

Required Application Materials

  • CV
  • Cover Letter
  • Reference List
  • One publication or essay

Special Instructions: PDF or Word format works best for unit

Summary of Physical Demands

  • Handling art related materials, assist in physical installations of exhibitions, and basic supplies for installing exhibits/art.
  • Using cart or dolly to move piece to area of work
  • Ladder use for installation of art


Department Statement: The Eli & Edythe Broad Art museum is particularly interested in individuals with a history of promoting diversity in their research, teaching, and service. This description is intended to indicate the kinds of tasks and levels of work difficulty that will be required of positions that will be given this title and shall not be construed as declaring what the specific duties and responsibilities of any particular position shall be. It is not intended to limit or in any way modify the right of any supervisor to assign, direct and control the work of employees under his or her supervision. The use of a particular expression or illustration describing duties shall not be held to exclude other duties not mentioned that are of similar kind or level of difficulty. MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer.

MSU Statement: Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges.

Salary: Minimum Rate/Salary: $44,088; Salary Commensurate with Experience

Applications close: Jun 30, 2021 Eastern Daylight Time


Categories: Job Postings