Small Museum Association

    Small Museums Working Together

Associate Curator

28 Mar 2023 7:42 PM | Hannah Weisman
  • About Berkeley 

    At the University of California, Berkeley, we are committed to creating a community that fosters equity of experience and opportunity, and ensures that students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds feel safe, welcome and included. Our culture of openness, freedom and belonging make it a special place for students, faculty and staff.

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    We are looking for equity-minded applicants who represent the full diversity of California and who demonstrate a sensitivity to and understanding of the diverse academic, socioeconomic, cultural, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ethnic backgrounds present in our community. When you join the team at Berkeley, you can expect to be part of an inclusive, innovative and equity-focused community that approaches higher education as a matter of social justice that requires broad collaboration among faculty, staff, students and community partners. In deciding whether to apply for a position at Berkeley, you are strongly encouraged to consider whether your values align with our Guiding Values and Principles, our Principles of Community, and our Strategic Plan.

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    Departmental Overview

    As one of the preeminent Jewish collections in the world, The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life provides accessible resources to scholars, students, and visitors. Its remarkably diverse archive, library and museum holdings include art, objects, texts, music, and historical documents about Jews in the Global Diaspora including the American West.

    The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life is a public-facing unit on campus that conducts original research and presents original exhibitions sourced from its collections of art, objects, texts, and music. The collection contains tens of thousands of items that require the care of professional curators to preserve, research, interpret, and present them. The Associate Curator contributes scholarly expertise, conducts original research, and develops exhibitions to help fulfill the museum's mandate to care for its collections and make them accessible to the university community (faculty, staff, students), external researchers, and the general public.

    Application Review Date

    The First Review Date for this job is: 04/07/2023.


    • Curates exhibitions (process of which includes, but is not limited to: conducting research, selecting objects, developing interpretive plans, engaging external stakeholders, writing labels and creating interpretive materials, and contributing to exhibition design and installation).
    • Reviews and provides constructive feedback on interpretive plans, exhibition labels, and interpretive materials for other colleagues' projects.
    • Catalogs items in the collection, including art and objects of various media.
    • Inventory and catalog collections materials in various formats and media, including identifying and/or authenticating the materials and creating or updating catalog records in the collections management system.
    • Participates in collections maintenance and digital preservation of collection materials.
    • Establish and maintain relationships with vendors and contractors involved in digitization, exhibition, or other curatorial projects.
    • Researches art and objects for purposes of identification and authentication and documents the research findings.
    • Participates in regular curatorial group decision-making regarding accessioning, deaccessioning, processing, storage, and exhibition of collection materials.
    • Participates in the development and presentation of in-person and online/virtual programming.
    • Responds to research and reference inquiries from the public or other institutions and facilitates access to the collections for university and external researchers/scholars.
    • Participates in grant writing and donor cultivation and stewardship.
    • Represents the museum at scholarly, public, and cultivation events.
Required Qualifications
  • Specialization in Jewish studies and deep knowledge of historical and contemporary Jewish art and life; knowledge of standard museum curatorial practices.
  • Experience working in museums, including: knowledge of collection building and ethical and legal standards for acquisition; knowledge of selection, evaluation, and exhibition of objects; conducting original research on/with material culture; and engaging audiences through exhibitions and related programs.
  • Skills in researching and writing scholarly publications.
  • Knowledge of the principles of conservation/preservation.
  • Skills in using collections management systems (software).
  • Experience engaging external stakeholders in exhibition development processes, including (but not limited to) artists/makers and their families, people with lived experiences relevant to the exhibition topic and themes, and donors.
  • Knowledge of the history of Jewish collections in the United States and abroad.
  • Fluency in Hebrew.
  • PhD in Jewish studies or related field and/or equivalent experience/training.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience supervising and mentoring interns, student workers, and/or junior staff.
  • Donor cultivation and relationship building skills.
  • Skills in writing grants and public announcements.
  • Fluency in Russian, Polish, or a Jewish language other than Hebrew.
  • MA in museum studies or related field and/or equivalent experience/training.

Salary & Benefits

This is a 100% full-time (40 hrs a week) exempt career position, which is paid monthly and eligible for full UC Benefits.

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University, please visit the University of California's Compensation & Benefits website.

Under California law, the University of California, Berkeley is required to provide a reasonable estimate of the compensation range for this role and should not offer a salary outside of the range posted in this job announcement. This range takes into account the wide range of factors that are considered in making compensation decisions including but not limited to experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, analysis of internal equity, and other business and organizational needs. It is not typical for an individual to be offered a salary at or near the top of the range for a position. Salary offers are determined based on final candidate qualifications and experience. 

The full salary range for this position is $74,300 - $134,500. The budgeted salary or hourly range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position is $74,300.00 - $100,000.00.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit your resume and cover letter online.

Other Information

This is not a visa opportunity.

Conviction History Background

This is a designated position requiring fingerprinting and a background check due to the nature of the job responsibilities.  Berkeley does hire people with conviction histories and reviews information received in the context of the job responsibilities.  The University reserves the right to make employment contingent upon successful completion of the background check.

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, please see the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission poster.

For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, please see the University of California Discrimination, Harassment, and Affirmative Action in the Workplace policy.

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