Curatorial Fellow for the Indigenous Arts of the Americas

Job description

Curatorial Fellow for the Indigenous Arts of the Americas

Stanford University

Job Number:

Curatorial Fellow for the Indigenous Arts of the Americas
Cantor Arts Center, Stanford University

Job Classification: Museum Curator 1
Job Code: 1841
Grade: H
Exemption Status: Exempt

This position is a 24-month fixed term position.

Note: Not all unique aspects of the job are covered by this job description.

Stanford is an equal employment opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Cantor Arts Center is committed to developing a diverse candidate pool.

About Us:
The Cantor boasts a proud and venerable history. Conceived with the founding of Stanford University in 1891, the museum opened in 1894, and now serves as the center for the visual arts on campus. The Cantor is an encyclopedic museum, with collections of historic and contemporary art from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, Oceania, and from the Stanford family, totaling over 33,000 objects.
In 2014, the Anderson Collection at Stanford University, opened next to the Cantor. The Anderson Collection is a world-class collection of 121 modern and contemporary American paintings and sculpture, all gifted to Stanford by the Anderson family.
Under new leadership, the Cantor has aspirations to be one of the finest university-museums in the country. The Cantor's growth opportunities are boundless and is expected to present national and international exhibitions over the next few years, bringing together the spirit of innovation and world-class research that is expected of Stanford.

Job Purpose:
The Cantor Arts Center seeks a curatorial fellow to work with the museum's collection of indigenous arts of the Americas, which encompasses over 1,500 objects from North, Central, and South America dating from the ancient period through the 21st century. Strengths include the indigenous arts of North America, Mexico, and Peru. As an integral part of the curatorial department, the fellow will gain meaningful experience in many aspects of curatorial work, including exhibition planning and implementation, program development, and collections research and cataloging. The fellow will benefit from the mentorship of Cantor staff as well as members of the Stanford Native and Indigenous communities, and will report to the Director.

Core Duties:
The fellow will be part of a collaborative team working to reinstall the museum's Indigenous Americas galleries. Responsibilities will include:

  • Conducting research on the collection to determine the focus of the reinstallation, developing programming related to the reinstallation, and writing gallery and online texts.
  • Assist in all aspects of the development of exhibitions; develop related programming, including lectures, symposia and other educational programs.
  • Assist in production of catalogs and books; write brochures and guides.
  • May participate in teaching courses at the Museum, mentor student interns.
  • Others duties may also be assigned.

The fellow should have demonstrated experience and a strong interest in working with the arts of the Indigenous Americas in a museum setting, and should be qualified to research, care for, and interpret the arts of the Indigenous Americas for diverse audiences. The fellow should be committed to fostering museum-based dialogue around historical and contemporary issues of interpretation, representation, and other relevant concerns. The Cantor Arts Center has a history of collaboration with the robust Native and Indigenous community at Stanford, and the fellow will be expected to further develop these relationships.
Required skills:
  • Knowledge of and research skills across a wide range of the arts of the Indigenous Americas, as well as a specialization within the field.
  • Record of organizing and implementing innovative museum installations and/or special exhibitions of the arts of the Indigenous Americas.
  • Experience working closely and building relationships with Native and Indigenous communities in a professional setting.
  • Sensitivity to historical and contemporary issues around the representation of the arts of the Indigenous Americas and of Native and Indigenous communities in museums and other cultural institutions.
  • Commitment to inclusivity, especially to developing and cultivating Native and Indigenous perspectives in the museum.
  • Ability to conduct thorough, original research.
  • Ability to write for and speak effectively with a wide range of audiences, from the general public to scholars.
  • Ability and willingness to work collaboratively with colleagues within the museum and across the Stanford University campus, including the Native American Studies program, the Native American Cultural Center, and the Stanford American Indian Organization. Ability and willingness to collaborate with other local university and public museums and Native and Indigenous communities.
  • Proficiency working with computer programs including Microsoft Office and art management software.

Required Education:
  • Master's degree in Art History or a related discipline (such as, though not limited to, Archaeology, Anthropology, Native American Studies, American Studies, or Museum Studies), with a specialization in the Indigenous Arts of the Americas.
  • Ph.D. preferred.

Physical Requirements:
  • Frequently perform desk-based computer tasks, seated work and use light/fine grasping.
  • Occasionally stand, walk, and write by hand, lift, carry, push pull objects that weight up to 10 pounds.
Consistent with its obligations under the law, the University will provide reasonable accommodation to any employee with a disability who requires accommodation to perform the essential functions of the job.

Working Conditions:
  • May work extended or non-standard hours, weekends and holidays based on business needs.
  • May work in areas with exposure to dust, paint, chemicals, and other toxins.

Work Standards:
  • Interpersonal Skills: Demonstrates the ability to work well with Stanford colleagues and clients and with external organizations.
  • Promote Culture of Safety: Demonstrates commitment to personal responsibility and value for safety; communicates safety concerns; uses and promotes safe behaviors based on training and lessons learned.
  • Subject to and expected to comply with all applicable University policies and procedures, including but not limited to the personnel policies and other policies found in the University's Administrative Guide,

Required Application Documents:
  • CV
  • Cover letter
  • Sample of scholarly writing
  • 3 references, including at least one academic reference and one professional reference


Location: Arts, California, United States
Classification Level:

To be considered for this position please visit our web site and apply on line at the following link:

Stanford is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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Job No:
Posted: 11/7/2018
Application Due: 1/7/2019
Work Type: