Curator – Abroms Engel Institute for the Visual Arts, University of Alabama at Birmingham

UAB’s Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts (AEIVA) seeks a passionate Curator to work closely with AEIVA’s Senior Director to shape the vision and trajectory of a dynamic program of contemporary fine arts exhibitions and growing permanent collection.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work closely with AEIVA Senior Director and guest curators to annually organize a variety of compelling exhibitions that draw from the AEIVA Permanent Collection, emerging and established contemporary artists, local and regional art collections, travelling exhibitions, artists in residence, multi-institutional collaborations, and UAB student/faculty exhibitions.
  • Work closely with AEIVA Collections and Exhibitions Coordinator on administrative aspects of exhibitions, including assisting with the preparation of contracts and exhibition checklists, as well as some registrarial duties such as preparing loan forms and facilitating shipping logistics.
  • Work closely with AEIVA staff to oversee but also assist in the general execution and installation of AEIVA exhibitions.
  • Conduct scholarly curatorial research based on current AEIVA exhibitions, as well as research the AEIVA Permanent Collection and present findings through essays, publications, lectures, gallery talks, exhibition texts and panels, web-based media, and other forms of communication.
  • Work closely with AEIVA Senior Director, AEIVA Curator of Academic Learning and Engagement, and various AEIVA stakeholders to develop public and campus educational programs and initiatives that relate to AEIVA exhibitions and/or utilize the AEIVA Permanent Collection.
  • Work closely with AEIVA Senior Director to plan the strategic growth of the AEIVA Permanent Collection and provide leadership to the AEIVA Collections Committee
  • Work closely with AEIVA Senior Director to provide leadership to the UAB Arts supporting member groups. This could include private tours, lectures, artist dinners, and planned visual arts trips for supporting members.
  • Work closely with AEIVA Senior Director and UAB Arts Senior Director of Development to identify fundraising and grant writing opportunities, donor cultivation, fundraising goals, and the development and maintenance of AEIVA’s annual exhibition budget.
  • Develop new, while also reinforcing existing relationships with various UAB entities and departments in a manner that fosters and promotes innovative and interdisciplinary collaborations.
  • Maintain active relationships with artists, community members, lenders, donors, and professional colleagues. Build partnerships that enhance community engagement. Maintain a visible role in the community including the maintenance of relationships with artists, galleries, collectors, donors, and members of the general public.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s degree or higher in an applicable area of study; including, but not limited to Art History, Studio Fine Art, Curatorial Studies, Cultural Anthropology, or related Visual/Cultural discipline.
  • An enthusiastic passion for a broad range of art periods, but with a focus on contemporary art.
  • Prior professional gallery/museum experience as Curator or Assistant Curator is preferred.
  • Ability to build positive and mutually beneficial relationships with board members, donors, local institutions, and community leaders.
  • Exemplary written and verbal communication skills, both scholarly and interpersonal.
  • Some experience managing/supervising/instructing college students and interns preferred.
  • Candidates should have a sophisticated understanding of contemporary cultural trends and the ability to use art as a conduit for facilitating critical public discourse and conversation.
  • Candidates are highly collaborative and inclusive in their curatorial practice.
  • Candidates are adept at reconciling competing ideas and needs across a diverse range of AEIVA stakeholders, that includes university faculty, staff, and students, AEIVA supporting members, donors, and collectors, local communities, school groups, and first-time museum attendees.
  • Candidates have a high level of cultural sensitivity and a strong commitment to DEI best practices.
  • Candidates are self-motivated but also able to work well as part of a team.
  • Candidates should impart integrity, empathy, perspective, self-awareness, and a sense of humor.
  • Teaching experience at the university level (as Faculty, Instructor of Record or Teaching Assistant) is desired but not required.


The Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts (AEIVA) is a contemporary arts center located on the campus of the University of Alabama at Birmingham. AEIVA boasts 5,000 square feet of exhibition space and features six to eight exhibitions per year. AEIVA’s exhibitions feature artists of regional, national, and international significance, as well as exhibitions of student work including the annual Bachelor of Fine Arts exhibition, featuring graduates of the UAB Department of Art and Art History. Since opening in 2014, AEIVA’s exhibitions have been featured in national publications such as The New York Times, Hyperallergic, The Nation, Garden & Gun, FORBES, and PBS Canvas among others.

AEIVA strives to provide accessible, experiential, and culturally impactful learning to our academic and public communities through transformative exhibitions, engaging educational programming, and purposeful collecting. AEIVA’s exhibitions and related educational programming are free and open to the campus and public.

Organizationally, AEIVA is situated within the university as part of UAB Visual and Performing Arts, a unit within the UAB Office of the Provost, which encompasses UAB’s Alys Stephens Center, ArtPlay Community Art Education, and UAB Arts in Medicine.


In fall 2018, UAB had a third consecutive year of record-high over all enrollment with 21,923 students, including its largest freshman class ever (2,299), with enrollment growth in every school on campus and in the acclaimed UAB Honors College. The freshman class had an average ACT of 25.2 and GPA of 3.73- both higher than 2017. UAB’s students are talented and diverse, with minority students making up 40.5 percent of the freshman class and 39.7 percent of the entire of the student body. UAB is was recently recognized as the Top Young University in the U.S. and 10th globally in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. UAB research expenditures are at a record high, exceeding $562 million in FY17, and UAB ranks 15th in federal funding nationally among public universities (top 4 percent) and 31st overall (top 5 percent). In National Institutes of Health funding, UAB ranks 8th among public universities (top 2 percent) and 23rd overall (top 4 percent) with more than $244 million. UAB Health system has over one million patient visits annually and is home to Alabama’s largest hospital and the 3rd largest public hospital in the U.S. UAB houses the state’s only level 1 adult trauma center and the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center in Alabama and a five-state region. UAB is the state’s largest single-site employer, with more than 23,000 employees, and has an annual economic impact of over $7.15 billion on Alabama.

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