Assistant Curator

Classified Categories: Archived

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Assistant Curator

Location: Contemporary Calgary (701, 11 St. SW)Full or Part Time: Full-TimeHours of Work: 40 hours/week. Weekend and evening work may be required.Regular/Temporary: 1-year fixed term contract with possibility of extensionSalary: $55,000/yearClosing date: September 30, 2023

About Contemporary Calgary

Contemporary Calgary provides Calgary and its visitors with a significant visual arts destination dedicated to modern and contemporary art. We believe that art can foster conversation, encourage the exploration of new ideas, and ultimately transform the places we live and the lives we lead.

With recent exhibitions that include ground-breaking contemporary names like Yoko Ono, Robert Houle, Chitra Ganesh, Diane Arbus and Marman and Borins, the Gallery plays a central role in Canada’s cultural landscape and is pivotal to the continued growth of Calgary’s growing contemporary art quarter.

Contemporary Calgary is an equal opportunity employer committed to creating a diverse, respectful and inclusive environment that is reflective of the community we serve. We encourage applications from all qualified candidates.

Curatorial Department

The curatorial department realises the ambitious programme of temporary exhibitions and commissions, including the production of publications and a rigorous roster of public programs and partner events.

How to Apply

Please apply with a cover letter and resume by September 30, 2023 to

Subject Line: Curatorial Assistant

Not all applicants will be contacted for an interview.

Job Description

The assistant curator works with a small and busy team on the realisation of projects with artists, lenders and arts institutions; delivering modern and contemporary exhibitions and commissions, including the organisation of transport and insurance; registrarial duties; public programming; and the production of catalogues.

As a member of the curatorial team, the assistant curator contributes ideas to the Gallery’s programme, is essential to the department’s collegiate work environment and liaises with other internal departments and with the professional art world.

Duties & responsibilities

Housed in what is regarded as a brutalist architectural icon, the gallery building was originally built as the Centennial Planetarium in 1967. Contemporary Calgary’s distinct architecture that includes three galleries, one auditorium, and a dome theatre, affords a range of dynamic programming that is site-specific and diverse. Each of the galleries has a unique design that accommodates exhibitions of varied scale and scope, and situates active conversations around artistic content and social changes. Contemporary Calgary hosts a programme of six to eight temporary exhibitions in a year that celebrate established figures, provide a platform for emerging artists and tendencies; new, site-specific commissions; and displays of works from important collections. The gallery strives to be a space for relevant and engaging content, raising voices from the Calgary community, across Canada and beyond.

Exhibitions are accompanied by a dedicated public programme and occasional artist publications. The Assistant Curator will work on the delivery of several projects concurrently.


  • Provide support to the curatorial department, from the research and development stage of a project through to its realisation
  • Liaise with artists and their representatives, arts institutions and lenders
  • Develop and further grow a robust roster of public programs
  • Work closely with all Contemporary Calgary departments including marketing & design, education, events, development and operations to secure a smooth flow of information
  • Monitor and maintain budgets for specific exhibitions and exhibition catalogues meticulously and in a timely fashion. This includes obtaining estimates, processing invoices, maintaining digital and physical budget files and liaising with the Finance Department
  • Registrar (in tandem with the Gallery Preparator)
  • Organize condition and packing reports to museum standard, keeping records of movement and conditions of works and liaise with conservators and couriers when necessary
  • Organize and oversee exhibition-related transport, which includes updating shipping lists, obtaining estimates of costs, and monitoring customs documentation, liaising with shippers and the exhibition Curator
  • Issue contracts to partner organizations, artists, curators and authors in consultation with the Department
  • Maintain files and correspondence as well as archiving past exhibition files
  • Exhibitions organization and public programs
  • Arrange accommodation, travel and per-diems for visiting artists, curators’, panelists, etc.
  • Assist the production of catalogues where required
  • Collate and copy-edit texts; research, request, store and return images and obtain copyright permissions for use in publications and communication materials, including website
  • Compile information for labels and text panels, write interpretative material for the season guide, website and exhibition where applicable
  • Assist in the training of gallery attendants and volunteers and work closely with the Education team to develop meaningful programming for members, visitors and children.
  • Assist with private tours and other Contemporary Calgary events including speaking at events where appropriate

Represent the Contemporary Calgary at public events, meetings and networking on behalf of the organisation


  • Bachelor’s Degree in Art History, Theory or Practice, Museum Studies, or extensiveequivalent experience. A Master’s degree is a plus
  • Minimum of three years’ experience of arts administration at a gallery, museum or foundation
  • Strong research and writing skills, with a keen eye for detail
  • A good knowledge of contemporary artistic practices and conversation, including curatorial best practices
  • Excellent organizational and multitasking abilities, capable of managing multiple projects simultaneously
  • Proficiency in using museum database software and Microsoft Office and Adobe suite
  • Ability to work as part of a team and independently, remaining calm under pressure, and to quickly find your feet in a fast-paced work environment
  • A team player with effective communication and interpersonal skills
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