Deadline: November 16, 2020 at 11:55 PM

Job Type: Permanent, full-time
Salary: $90,000 annually
Start Date: February 1, 2021

The Art Gallery of York University is seeking applications for the position of Curator.

We are looking for an established Curator with a collaborative and socially engaged vision to join and strengthen our team. The ideal candidate has a demonstrated history of working to expose and eradicate oppressive institutional practices with equity and accessibility in mind. Knowledge of contemporary art in a diversity of media is essential as is the drive to challenge, expand, and shift the conventions of exhibition and art institutional practices. One must be knowledgeable of contemporary art practices world-wide with an understanding of how to support artists with distinct cultural practices from exhibitions to performances, including commissioning artworks and coordinating both small and large-scale events.

The Curator will be responsible to the Director/Curator and work in collaboration with all AGYU curatorial staff in developing and managing the overall planning, scheduling, and implementation of AGYU programs. This involves collaboration (internal and external), knowledge building and sharing, community consultation, and extended research (from scholarly to community engagement). The successful candidate will develop and produce unique programs to foster audience engagement and will be adept at coordinating multiple projects simultaneously.

Organization Description

About AGYU
The AGYU is located in Tkaronto / Toronto on the Keele Campus of York University in the Jane and Finch community. This land is subject of the Dish With One Spoon Covenant and Wampum between the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, the Three Fires Confederacy (the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi), and other allied nations in an agreement to share land and its resources. AGYU occupies land referred to in Crown Treaty 13, known as the Toronto Purchase.

We are a socially minded public non-profit contemporary art gallery that is responsive to the work and research of artists and the engagement of audiences through exhibitions, performances, lectures, public events, and publications. AGYU is an affiliated and supported unit of York University, with key funders including the Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, foundations, embassies, other cultural institutions, and through our membership.

Established in 1988, the AGYU is focused on contemporary artistic, curatorial, and social art practices. AGYU’s programs have an international reach with a strong program of community engagement. It is a social and collaborative environment that engages with the public and works with a multiplicity of contributors and audiences from local and international artists to community and student groups. AGYU promotes 2SLGBTQIAP positive spaces & experiences and works towards being barrier free. It is an environment that is committed to anti-racism, working to eradicate institutional racial biases and develop accountable programs that support Black, Indigenous and People of Colour. AGYU is an artist and research centered organization that has a commitment to building audiences for contemporary art.

With York University, through the support of a 5 million dollar donation by Joan and Martin Goldfarb, AGYU is undertaking a capital expansion to build a multi-site art institution on the University’s Keele campus for late 2022. A stand-alone art gallery combined with the AGYU’s current space will form a unified art institution that will magnify the breadth of AGYU’s scope, re-envisioning of the University’s art collection while also enabling greater access to contemporary artistic and cultural programming for the University and the surrounding community.

Requirements and Qualifications

Essential Qualifications:
Educational Requirements:
Post-Graduate MA degree with emphasis on fine art, art history, or curatorial studies, or equivalent experience.

Experience Requirements:
Must have practical experience, having worked as a curator within a public arts organization or institution for a minimum of 6 years.

Knowledge and Skills:

  • It is essential that the candidate have critical and discursive skills to both support and critique art institutional thinking from art collection practices to working with a diversity of artists’ practices.
  • The ability to implement anti-racist and anti-oppression working methodologies when engaging artists and audience is essential.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills for writing publications, press releases, grant, and fundraising applications, speaking with the media and public advocacy is a necessity.
  • One must have experience mounting solo and group exhibitions within gallery spaces as well as having knowledge of producing artwork in the public realm.
  • The AGYU operates within a complex mix of local and international contemporary art institutions – from community and education-based to exhibition or publication oriented, including both for- and not-for-profit art organizations, as well as large scale public museums and galleries and smaller artist-led initiatives from artist-run-centres to artist collectives – of which the candidate must be knowledgeable for collaboration and resource sharing.
  • Knowledge of government granting agencies at the municipal, provincial, and federal levels with a proven track record of grant writing with successful outcomes. Knowledge of individual donors, collectors, and businesses and corporations who are ethical donors and receptive to supporting contemporary art is an asset.
  • Practical experience with art-handling and shipping is a must with knowledge of audio-visual technology, museum standards, and exhibition design skills. Knowledge of graphic design software and online platforms is an asset.
  • Experience producing publications with copy-editing, graphic design, and commercial printing knowledge is an asset.
  • Knowledge of policies related to anti-racism, equity, accessibility, and guidelines on pay equity is required.
  • Communication experience with an understanding of how to engage audiences through multiple digital social media and online platforms is essential. Knowledge of media outlets with the ability to tailor press releases and media to a specificity of programs.

 For full list of requirements and the job description visit York University’s website.

This position is a permanent full-time with a base starting salary of $90,000 annually. It is a social position that often requires hosting visiting artists with evening and weekend work. Travel for research purposes will be necessary once pandemic restrictions are lifted and health risks have lessened. Pension and benefits are included.

To Apply

Application Process
Please apply through York University’s website:
Please not send direct inquiries or applications except through this portal.

The application deadline is 11:55pm, Monday, November 16, 2020.
 Start Date: February 1, 2021