Phoenix Art Museum seeks an experienced Chief Curator to manage and provide administrative leadership to its Curatorial Division.  The Chief Curator oversees the development and implementation of all curatorial projects, exhibitions, and art acquisitions. The position serves on the senior management team, reporting directly to the Museum Director, and works closely with the Board of Trustees and the Collections Committee.

Specific Responsibilities:

  • Expand the audience for the Museum’s programs through collaboration with in-house departments as well as other organizations in the city to meet the interests and needs of Phoenix and the region’s diverse audiences.
  • Oversee the management and growth of the Museum’s collections, conduct research on the collections, and recommend acquisitions and deaccessions.
  • Serve as the Curator of Contemporary Art for the Museum.
  • Work with the Director and the Director of Development to develop and cultivate relationships with donors and collectors; raise funds for exhibitions and acquisitions.
  • Supervise the work of the Curatorial Division.

Phoenix Art Museum, opened in 1959, has grown to a vibrant, leading visual arts institution in the Southwest.  The founding of the Museum and its development reflect the constant commitment from the community and mirror the growth of Phoenix from a small desert town into the sixth largest city in the United States.  The Museum is the Southwest’s premier destination for world-class visual arts with 285,000 square feet in gallery, education, and presentation space designed by New York architects Tod Williams/Billie Tsien & Associates.  Phoenix Art Museum visitors are immersed in culture while viewing popular exhibitions that feature artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Paul Cezanne, Andy Warhol, and Ansel Adams.

The Museum has a collection of more than 18,000 works of art, emphasizing Modern and Contemporary, American, European, Latin American, Asian, Western American Art, Photography, and Fashion Design.  Eleven organizations support the Museum through fundraising and volunteer efforts.  Last year, nearly 3,000 individuals volunteered an approximate 125,000 hours through various committees, support groups, education programs, events, and exhibitions.

As Arizona’s cultural hub for over 50 years, Phoenix Art Museum presents festivals, live performances, independent art films and educational programs for people of all ages that will both enlighten and entertain.  The Phoenix Art Museum operates with an annual budget of approximately $10 million (FY2015), and serves more than 250,000 visitors annually.

For further information about the museum and a more detailed job description, visit

Job Requirements

Candidates will possess:

  • A Master’s degree in art history or related field, and a minimum of six years management-level museum experience and seven years applied curatorial experience, which includes supervisory experience, or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience from which comparable knowledge, skills and abilities have been achieved ;
  • Ability to provide effective vision and strategic direction to the Curatorial Division staff and supporters;
  • Demonstrated experience managing substantial department, project and program budgets;
  • A distinguished record of exhibitions, publications, lectures and other professional accomplishments;
  • Knowledge of contemporary art trends and demonstrated expertise in that area;
  • Strong leadership, interpersonal, planning and organizational skills;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, as well as presentation skills;
  • A high level of problem solving and diplomacy skills;
  • The ability to work effectively with staff and with a wide variety of Museum supporters, visitors, members, and volunteers;

Additionally, the Chief Curator must be a passionate and energetic person with the ability to accomplish multiple projects concurrently.  S/he must be a team player and have the demonstrated interest and ability to share the Museum’s collection with diverse audiences and to build a positive image and lasting relationships for the Museum. S/he must be an innovative thinker and a great communicator with the ability to present the Museum and its collection to all internal and external constituencies, and must possess a reputation for the highest level of integrity and credibility.


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