The Phyllis C. Wattis Curator

The Phyllis C Wattis Curator reports to the chief curator and works primarily on temporary exhibitions in all media of various scales to include originating, and/or coordinating with guest-curators, exhibitions in the long-standing Matrix series, touring exhibitions, major special exhibitions, and Art Wall commissions but will also contribute to BAMPFA collection-building efforts, public programming, and collaborations with colleagues within the department and across departments. This position may be hired to the Senior Curator level if the candidate displays a higher level of skills and such title is in line with their job trajectory.

Job Scope

This position takes the lead on coordinating the Matrix series that incorporates myriad curatorial voices. In line with our mission to be locally connected and globally relevant, this role will develop close relationships with artists in the Bay Area while staying abreast of developments with international artistic and curatorial practice. Modern and Contemporary experience with a focus on one or more of the following: Global Asian, Black Diaspora, or Latin American/Latinx focus. This role supervises one Curatorial Assistant/Assistant Curator.


  • Curates original exhibitions and programs of primarily modern and contemporary art.
  • Conducts original and academic research on artists, objects, and cultural ideas.
  • On occasion, commissions new art works.
  • Curates exhibitions within the MATRIX program and is responsible for staying abreast of cutting edge artists and exhibition models, and reflecting current contemporary trends in exhibition programming.
  • Collaborates with other curators and director in planning and evaluation of overall exhibition program.
  • Conducts research on artists and objects, and presents research results in written labels, brochures, catalogues, tours, essays, and other public presentations.
  • Actively cultivates relationships with foundations, trustees, existing and potential major donors, curators, collectors, and artists for programmatic and financial support.
  • Collaborates with development staff to strategize and fundraise for program-specific as well as operational and other curatorial needs, and for the capital campaign and endowments.
  • Introduces programs, gives gallery talks, and writes original interpretive materials and essays for publications that engage a general audience as well as a highly informed one.
  • Represents the museum at scholarly, public, and cultivation events.
  • Holds leadership role in the contemporary art field, through close working relationships with curators and through original scholarly research.
  • Selects and trains employees, and aligns their efforts with department and campus objectives, providing constructive feedback and performance assessments, and motivating employees to do their best.
  • Supervises curatorial assistant, work study students and/or interns.
  • May serves as work lead for curatorial assistant, lower-level curators.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Required Qualifications

  • Masters degree or higher in related area and/or equivalent experience/training
  • Experience organizing exhibitions with special loans, communicating with lenders, developing layouts, checklists, and writing gallery didactics.
  • Modern and Contemporary art experience with a focus on one or more of the following: Global Asian, Black Diaspora, or Latin American/Latinx focus. High level of experience working with living artists.
  • Knowledge of and experience with standard museum practice and is current with new thinking in curatorial practice. (Required)
  • Knowledge of selection, evaluation, and exhibition of objects.
  • Fundraising including donor cultivation and relationship building.
  • Skills in scholarly research and writing scholarly publications.
  • Ability to communicate complex concepts about art to a public audience that ranges from casual museum visitors to academics.
  • Ability to travel nationally and internationally.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication and public speaking skills.
  • Excellent project management skills, attention to detail, and ability to meet deadlines.
  • Exhibition publication experience.
  • Ability to represent the organization well in various settings within the curatorial field, at conferences, etc.
  • Ability to prioritize teamwork.
  • Leadership skills to include taking initiative, good judgment, decision-making and personal accountability.
  • Ability to manage performance and professional development of junior curators. (Preferred)

Salary and Benefits

This is an exempt, monthly paid position. The annual salary range of the position is $85,000-95,000, commensurate with experience.

Information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University is available here.

Application Review Date

The First Review Date for this job is: October 13, 2022

To Apply

Visit the UC Berkeley jobs portal and search 43420, the job number for this position. Follow the application process detailed on the website. To be considered, applications must be completed through the campus online website. Please submit your cover letter and resume as a single attachment when applying.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information about your rights as an applicant see:

For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see: