Associate Curator of Sculpture and Decorative Arts

Company Name: 

The Getty


1200 Getty Center Dr.
Los Angeles, CA 90049

Contact Name: 

Anne-Lise Desmas

Job Description: 


Our Mission


The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks to inspire curiosity about, and enjoyment and understanding of, the visual arts by collecting, conserving, exhibiting and interpreting works of art of outstanding quality and historical importance and is one of four programs of the J. Paul Getty Trust. The Museum operates two sites, the Getty Villa in Malibu, which exhibits its collection of Greek and Roman antiquities, and the Getty Center in Brentwood, which displays its collections of European art: Medieval and Renaissance illuminated manuscripts, paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, drawings to 1900, and photography to the present day (including non-European works). The Museum mounts approximately 25 temporary exhibitions a year across its two sites; maintains an annual permanent gallery improvement program, and offers wide-ranging and ambitious programming for its visitors.


The OpporTunity


The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks an Associate Curator of Decorative Arts with expertise in French Decorative Arts of the 17th and 18th centuries. This position within the Department of Sculpture and Decorative Arts will play an instrumental role in a proposed redisplay and reinterpretation of the Museum's world-renown collection of French Decorative Arts. The successful candidate will have the broad art historical background to curate engaging and meaningful exhibitions and displays of decorative arts; the ability to bring context and insight to their interpretive programs; the willingness to develop compelling and inclusive narratives for diverse audiences; and a high scholarship level to publish on the collection. Reporting to the Senior Curator of Sculpture and Decorative Arts, the Associate Curator of Decorative Arts will be a team player, working closely with other curators in the Department, as well as with colleagues from Conservation, Design, Exhibition, Education, Interpretive Content, Registrars, Imaging Services and Preparators. They will also be responsible for all the curatorial duties related to the collection and exhibitions, as listed below.


  • Applies advanced knowledge of art history and art education to curatorial assignments.
  • Develops and oversees the displays and interpretation of the Decorative Arts collection in the permanent galleries incorporating diverse and inclusive stories that introduce new voices and perspectives.
  • Performs scholarly research on the Decorative Arts collection to support the Getty’s mission.
  • Manages day-to-day operations of assigned collections, including consultation with conservators, imputing information in the database, updating the information for the online collection pages, and answering inquiries about the collection.
  • Recommends potential acquisitions to the senior curator and takes initiative in preparation of acquisitions proposals.
  • Develops and implements exhibitions incorporating diverse and inclusive stories that introduce new voices and perspectives.
  • Travels for research, exhibitions and art fairs, and networks internationally to develop working relationship with museum professionals and academics.
  • Publishes and lectures in area of specialization.
  • Gives collection tours for educators, docents, scholars, and the general public.
  • Supervises department interns.


  • Master’s degree in art history, art or art education OR 4-7 yrs of curatorial experience OR Ph.D.
  • Fluency in at least one foreign language (modern or ancient) required
  • Skilled in all curatorial functions

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