Curator of Indigenous Ceramics

Application Deadline: June 23, 2023

Term: Part-time contract; estimated 20 hours/week; Summer 2023 – Summer 2025; possibility of conversion to full-time permanent

Start date: Late August/early September

Salary: $35-40 hourly, plus a comprehensive benefits package

Location: hybrid, with on-site, remote, and research travel components

About the Museum

The Gardiner Museum brings together people of all ages and communities through the shared values of creativity, wonder, and community that clay and ceramic traditions inspire. We engage audiences with exhibitions, programs, and hands-on classes, while stewarding a significant permanent collection. We interpret historical ceramics to emphasize their relevance today, and champion emerging and established Canadian artists and their role in the broader world. We innovate through clay education, as we bring together the experience of making with a deeper understanding of the art of ceramics. We believe in making, looking, and thinking through clay. The Gardiner Museum has a collection of over 4,000 objects from the Ancient Americas, Europe, Japan and China, as well as contemporary works with an emphasis on leading Canadian artists. The Gardiner Museum is among the few museums in the world focused on ceramics and is one of the world’s most notable specialty museums.

Curator of Indigenous Ceramics position

The Gardiner Museum is seeking a contract curator with a speciality in Indigenous art and culture to join our team and contribute to the re-imagination of our exhibition areas. The successful candidate will help shape the institution’s commitment to creating innovative ways of building and sharing Indigenous stories through ceramics of the past and present, help build a program of community engagement, and promote an inclusive relationship in partnership with Indigenous communities. The successful candidate should have a strong knowledge of Indigenous ceramic traditions or cultural material of North America. Reporting to the Chief Curator, the contract curator will be responsible for developing the narrative and content of a new Indigenous ceramics gallery space, from its concept phase to its implementation, bringing an Indigenous voice and perspective to the stories told. This person should also have full competency in the appropriate display, interpretation, and management of Indigenous cultural items and belongings. The curator’s work will develop in close consultation with the Gardiner Museum’s Indigenous Advisory group and in collaboration with members of the Gardiner Museum’s curatorial team. Their work will be informed by the Gardiner’s Museum’s support of the principles of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and the standards recommended by the Canadian Museum Association Move to Action Report in response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

Scope of work

– Participate in the Gardiner Museum Indigenous Advisory Group (virtual)

– Attend and participate in internal project development meetings at the Gardiner (virtual or in-person)

– Attend and participate in design development meetings with architect and designer (virtual or in-person)

– Make recommendations regarding the geographical and temporal scope of the Indigenous gallery

– Develop curatorial narratives for the Indigenous gallery space, including identifying items for display (primarily loans from other institutions/partners) and developing complete checklists at different phases of the project

– Develop and build relationships with lenders, partner institutions, and community organizations and members

– Travel to institutions outside of Toronto for research as needed

– Prepare loan request letters and work on the loans process with Gardiner staff

– Advise on best practices for access and display of Indigenous cultural works

– Identify contextual materials/images/multi-media to include in the display, and develop multimedia content as needed

– Write didactic content for the gallery, including introductory panels and object labels

– Participate in the installation phase of the gallery

– Advise on and develop educational programs connected to the gallery for Indigenous and nonIndigenous communities

More here.

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