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Curatorial Assistant, Manetti Shrem Museum (Davis, CA)

Job Summary

Under general direction of the Associate Curator of the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art, coordinate multiple administrative aspects of the Manetti Shrem Museum’s exhibition and collection needs as well as education program development. The Curatorial Assistant will work in partnership with curatorial and education staff to develop a strategic approach to overall exhibition content development, and manage exhibition proposals and artist submissions. Will also work with collections staff to help organize the Fine Arts Collection database, facilitate gift proposals, access records for internal and external researchers, and participate in outreach to artists and potential art donors.  

Job Requirements and Responsibilities

The Curatorial Assistant should function with minimal supervision and enjoy working within a small, innovative environment that is mission Department Specific.

Job Scope: Driven, results-driven and community oriented. Must have strong written and verbal communication skills, utilize good judgment in working across departments and with multiple constituents, and possess basic knowledge of fine art collection standards.

60% CURATORIAL DEPARTMENT ADMINISTRATION: Research and development, as well as cataloguing of the Fine Arts Collection; exhibition preparation (research, preparing checklists and generating texts for didactics, wall labels, and publicity materials; maintaining schedules and files); and general administrative tasks including managing ongoing exhibition proposals, proposed gifts, inquiries and related correspondence.

20% OUTREACH: Conduct guest tours and serve as liaison with other Museum departments, visitors and patrons to advance exhibitions and education programs. Assist in staff, student and volunteer training on all aspects of above. Meet with artists and potential donors of artwork to promote participation in the museum and exhibitions. Prepare materials for artists and potential donors of artwork to introduce the museum and exhibitions.

20% RESEARCH AND PREPARATION FOR EXHIBITIONS AND GRANTS: Identify grant opportunities and submission schedules for support of exhibitions. Manage contact with potential granting organizations, provide analysis of grant opportunities, and generate content for education and grants as directed.

Physical Demands

  • Work at the computer for extended periods of time. 
  • Lift objects weighing up to 25 lbs., assisted or unassisted 


  • Bachelor’s degree and/or an equivalent combination of education and experience in art history.
  • Demonstrated interest in developing and coordinating exhibitions.
  • Knowledge of art history and experience in researching art and art history.
  • Experience researching and analyzing data, summarizing information, making recommendations and generating reports; familiarity with data management protocols and databases.
  • Experience working with funders and/or artists to represent institutional direction.
  • Experience working in an environment that requires high-level verbal and written communication skills to create and maintain collaborative working relationships. Detail oriented is necessary.
  • Organizational skills to achieve timely progress on multiple simultaneous tasks, meet deadlines, and maintain a high level of quality.
  • Experience using various software programs (word processing, spreadsheets, databases, presentation software, etc.) to accomplish assignments.


  • Demonstrated ability to anticipate and proactively facilitate complex processes such as exhibition development and develop creative solutions for resolution.
  • Experience recognizing and protecting the confidentiality of highly sensitive or controversial information.
  • Political acumen and judgment to handle sensitive or difficult situations with care.

Special Requirements (Background Check):

This position is a critical position and subject to a background check. Employment is contingent upon successful completion of background investigation including criminal history and identity checks.

Work Environment

Work flexible schedule including occasional evenings and weekends to  respond to operational needs.

UC Davis is a smoke and tobacco free campus effective January 1,  2014. Smoking, the use of smokeless tobacco products, and the use of  unregulated nicotine products (e-cigarettes) will be strictly prohibited  on any UC Davis owned or leased property, indoors and outdoors,  including parking lots and residential space. Additional information and  specifics regarding the policy are available at http://breathefree.ucdavis.edu/index.html.  

The University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. UC Davis is committed to hiring a workforce that reflects the diversity of our community.

Manetti Shrem Museum’s Diversity, Equity, Accessibility and Inclusion Mission: We make an ongoing commitment to confront systemic racism in the Manetti Shrem Museum’s culture and practices by understanding the fraught history of museums and breaking down barriers to diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion.

To Apply

Online application here to apply

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