What do Curators do?
Administer collections, such as artwork, collectibles, historic items, or scientific specimens of museums or other institutions. May conduct instructional, research, or public service activities of institution.
- Plan and organize the acquisition, storage, and exhibition of collections and related materials, including the selection of exhibition themes and designs, and develop or install exhibit materials.
- Write and review grant proposals, journal articles, institutional reports, and publicity materials.
- Plan and conduct special research projects in area of interest or expertise.
- Confer with the board of directors to formulate and interpret policies, to determine budget requirements, and to plan overall operations.
- Train and supervise curatorial, fiscal, technical, research, and clerical staff, as well as volunteers or interns.
- Develop and maintain an institution's registration, cataloging, and basic recordkeeping systems, using computer databases.
- Negotiate and authorize purchase, sale, exchange, or loan of collections.
- Provide information from the institution's holdings to other curators and to the public.
- Attend meetings, conventions, and civic events to promote use of institution's services, to seek financing, and to maintain community alliances.
- Design, organize, or conduct tours, workshops, and instructional or educational sessions to acquaint individuals with an institution's facilities and materials.
- Inspect premises to assess the need for repairs and to ensure that climate and pest-control issues are addressed.
- Study, examine, and test acquisitions to authenticate their origin, composition, history, and to assess their current value.
- Arrange insurance coverage for objects on loan or for special exhibits, and recommend changes in coverage for the entire collection.
- Schedule events, and organize details including refreshment, entertainment, decorations, and the collection of any fees.
- Establish specifications for reproductions and oversee their manufacture, or select items from commercially available replica sources.
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