William & Sarah Ross Soter Curator of Photography – Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, FL

Job Description:

Reporting to the Director & CEO for performance reviews with a focus on four key areas:

  • Content: The vision and concepts foregrounding exhibitions.
  • Collaboration: Sharing their vision and concepts to form meaningful programs with LCE and develop meaningful messages with Marketing & Communications to ensure Curatorial projects are  relevant to the community.
  • Cultivation: Engaging with current and future Norton supporters to generate gifts  of art, develop collections, attend art fairs, and lead collector groups in addition to continuing to develop the Museum’s collection of art.
  • Coordination: Meeting key milestones in exhibition production and following the curatorial workflow and collection-related procedures created by the Director of Curatorial Operations & Research.

As part of the management of the department, Curators are accountable to the Director of Curatorial Operations & Research (DCO&R) in meeting deadlines that ensure curatorial projects remain on schedule. The DCO&R reports to the Director & CEO and represents the Curatorial Department as a member of the Museum’s Senior Staff. The DCO&R is the Curators’ strategic partner, working alongside them, and leading the Curatorial staff team to realize visionary, research-driven curatorial projects and programs.

The William and Sarah Ross Soter Curator of Photography is responsible for developing a relevant program of innovative and original exhibitions, in collaboration with LCE and Marketing & Communications.  

Responsible to demonstrate in-depth awareness of photography, video art and new media. They propose acquisitions that will enhance the Norton’s collection photo-based art and represent the important stylistic developments from the 19th century to present day, within the context of the museum’s historical collection. They will also introduce those works to the Norton’s Works of Art Committee (WoAC) in their oversight of acquisitions.   

The William and Sarah Ross Soter Curator of Photography will collaborate with the Director & CEO, the Chief Development Officer, and colleagues in Development to generate financial support of photography and related media through donor visits, grant and foundation applications, as well as working to develop, expand and sustain the Photography Committee.

The William and Sarah Ross Soter Curator of Photography will suggest, create and conduct engaging programming through professional connections and propose adventurous ideas with LCE and Marketing & Communications colleagues. 

Familiar with requirements and approximate costs to realize exhibitions and able to complete projects within time and budgets being accountable to the DCO&R on these matters. Additionally, they must be familiar with expenses associated with special installation requirements, honoraria, artist fees, and transportation.   

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:


  • ​Create and organize exhibitions (including permanent collection rotations or traveling exhibitions) based on rigorous research and original ideas.
  • In the development of exhibitions, present a holistic project proposal that collaboratively incorporates educational and marketing programming to be presented twice a year to the Audience Development Committee (ADC).
  • Following a schedule developed by the DCO&R, conduct research and write all exhibition didactics including introductory texts, labels, brochures, and, when budgeted, supporting catalogues.
  • ​Act as coordinating curator, in collaboration with the DCO&R, for guest-curated or other traveling exhibitions. 
  • ​Determine the layout of exhibitions and, together with the DCO&R, Head of Installation, and the Graphic Designer, develop the exhibition design as well as installation schedule.
  • ​Assist in identifying and securing exhibition venues for traveling exhibitions.
  • ​In collaboration with the DCO&R and curatorial department staff, oversee installation of permanent collection galleries.
  • ​With Director & CEO develop and revise as needed the Museum’s Collection Development Strategy for expanding the collection, as well as make recommendations for acquisitions, write justifications and present to Works of Art Committee (WoAC).
  • ​Conduct public lectures on exhibitions and collection; create engaging online digital content, build outreach to local, regional, national and international communities for audience development.
  • ​Assist with the Norton’s Artist in Residence (AiR) program. 
  • ​Build and maintain relationships with artists, dealers, curators, directors, critics and journalists.
  • ​Together with DCO&R, examine the condition of collection and work with registrars to determine conservation needs. Manage and oversee conservation projects from start to finish as well as suggesting de-accessioning plan in accordance with the Museum’s Collection Management Policy.

Cultivation/ Fundraising

  • ​Develop and maintain relationships with collectors, donors, private funders and foundations
  • ​Represent the museum at national and international art fairs, biennials, exhibition openings and other contemporary art world events.
  • Assist with solicitation of funds for acquisitions in conjunction with Director & CEO and Chief Development Officer.
  • ​Visit private collections and work to sustain interest in the Norton.
  • Work closely with the Director & CEO to cultivate donors in order to receive gifts of art that will increase the quality of the Norton permanent collection.
  • Assist Chief Development Officer, Director of Institutional Giving and staff in writing grants for curatorial projects


  • A minimum of 10 years’ experience with a history of developing innovative and meaningful exhibitions
  • Excellent writing skills demonstrated by authorship of publications or associated texts on various media platforms
  • Strong public speaking skills and ability to develop lectures that contribute to meaningful dialogue within the contemporary art world.  
  • Familiar with international art fairs, contemporary and photography galleries and alternative, independent spaces.  
  • Experience coordinating exhibitions from other institutions, smaller spotlight projects and installing collection galleries.
  • Strong collaboration skills and knowledge of current best practices.
  • Awareness of, and professional associations and connections with colleagues nationally (and internationally) at other public and private institutions as well as the exhibitions and projects being organized by colleagues.
  • Experience facilitating national and international loans.

Note: Nothing in this job description restricts management’s rights to assign or reassign duties and

responsibilities to this job at any time.

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