what does a curator do

What does a Curator do?

Curators manage, preserve, and maintain historical artifacts. They differentiate an artifacts origins and categorize them by the findings. A curator must be very knowledgeable in history, culture, and art in order to complete this. A curator may also give tours and educate the public or train students on varies historical time periods and its artifacts.

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How to Become a Curator

Curators most earn a minimum of a Masters degree, however you will first need to earn a bachelor’s degree in order to move own to earn a Masters degree. Most employers would prefer you earn a degree in museum studies, art, history, archeology, anthropology, and other similar areas. It is recommended during or before your graduate studies to obtain an internship. Check out your local communities museums and see if they offer volunteer or internship opportunities.

Job Description of a Curator

what does a curator do

A curator usually perform their job tasks onsite. A curator would oversee collections of artwork and/or historic items. They are involved in the preparation of artifacts for storage and shipping. They would assemble, install, and arrange the artifacts for a museum’s exhibitions and secure the safety and condition of the artifact.

They also have the important role of carrying out educational tours to the general public and oversee technical, curatorial and training to students. A curator should be aware of any potential problems that may occur and find ways to correct them. They can be found working in places other than a museum, such as a zoo, historical sites, botanical gardens, and even aquariums. A curator would appraise, edit and maintain records in libraries or museums that are historically valuable. This would include photographing, and documenting an artifact’s condition and status in order to correctly appraise it for value and historical accuracy or other requirement.

Benefits of being a Curator

We are excited to share the many benefits of being a curator with you. We are committed to helping you find the perfect career, so continue to follow along to learn more. There are many benefits to being a curator and job satisfaction is one of them. Curators have job satisfaction because they get to work on something they feel passionate about. They work with rare and exciting collections that may date back to antiquity. Here are a few other benefits of being a curator:

  • They enjoy sharing their knowledge about art or history with the public and making a difference in the community and society.
  • Curators can seek work environments that allow them to work with a team or independently.
  • A Curator’s work varies daily, such as acquiring new objects, so they always stay energized.
  • Many employers pay competitive salaries and benefits for curators.

We hope this article has helped you decide if this exciting career would be a good fit for you, and we wish you success!

Curator Career Video Transcript

Preserving and exhibiting objects from the past… curators, conservators, and museum technicians work to inspire and teach audiences today. They oversee and care for collections of artwork and historic items, and conduct education programs for an institution. Curators (or museum directors) negotiate the purchase, sale, and loan of collections. They are often experts in a particular field, such as botany, art, or history, and may authenticate and categorize the specimens in a collection.

Curators also manage research and educational programs, and represent their institution at events and in the media. Museum technicians protect, document, and oversee the transportation of museum and collection objects. They also answer questions from the public and help curators and outside scholars use the museum’s collections.

Conservators research and preserve works of art and artifacts. They usually specialize in a type of object, such as books, paintings, or architectural material. Conservators use a variety of methods to study objects and reverse years of wear. Curators, museum technicians, and conservators work full time in museums, historical sites, governments, colleges and universities, and corporations.

Curator and conservator positions typically require a master’s degree in a field such as museum studies, conservation, or art history, while museum technicians usually have a related bachelor’s degree. Candidates with internship or volunteer experience in archives or museums are more competitive.

Article Citations

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Archivists, Curators, and Museum Workers.

National Center for O*NET Development. 25-4012.00. O*NET OnLine.

The career video is in the public domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.