Other curatorial projects

Find out about ongoing curatorial projects we are supporting, as well as past projects.

Eleanor Hutchison in the National Gallery Library Photo © the National Gallery, London

Eleanor Hutchison in the National Gallery Library


Photo © the National Gallery, London

National Gallery Curatorial Traineeships

Since 2011 we’ve been working with the National Gallery to offer two fully funded curatorial traineeships specialising in Old Master painting. Aimed at nurturing the next generation of curators, each trainee benefits from a 22-month training programme, with six months at the National Gallery before working on a specific curatorial project at a regional museum partner, with continued mentoring from the National Gallery.

The current trainees, Eleanor Hutchison and Kate O'Donoghue, started at the National Gallery in Autumn 2017 and head to Compton Verney and Walker Art Gallery later in 2018. Read their blogs to find out how they're getting on.

Previous regional partners have included Ferens Art Gallery in Hull, Auckland Castle, Birmingham Museums Trust, York Art Gallery, Manchester Art Gallery, and Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums.

Art Fund and Whitechapel Gallery courses

We frequently offer fully funded bursaries to one-day courses for museum and art professionals, developed in partnership with Whitechapel Gallery, covering events programming, exhibition organisation, communications, development and more. Current bursaries are listed here. Be the first to know about new opportunities – sign up to our e-bulletin.

Gasworks’ Curator Fellowship Awards

Art Fund collaborated with Gasworks to support a one-month funded fellowship for two curators working with a UK collecting institution. The fellowships are hosted by Gasworks’ international partners Bisagra in Lima, Peru, and VASL Artists’ Collective in Karachi, Pakistan. Gasworks is the centre of the Triangle Network, an international network of arts organisations mostly based in Africa, Asia and South America.

Going Public

Going Public is an initiative created by Museums Sheffield alongside project co-originators Mark Doyle and Sebastien Montabonel to develop conversations around the relationship between private philanthropy and the public art sector. It asks the question: where are the philanthropists of the future, and what role do public galleries and private collections play in bringing great art to everyone? Details of Going Public 2017 will be released soon.


We are collaborating with the DACS Foundation on Art360, one of the most ambitious archiving projects for UK visual arts to date. The national pilot scheme will help the digitisation of works by some of the top British artists and offer advice on how to safeguard Britain’s visual culture. We are also supporting a conference, Art360: The Gift and its Legacy, in February 2016. Find out more.

New Collecting Awards

This funding programme enables curators to build critical professional skills by pursuing new avenues of collecting for their museums. By offering curators 100% of the funding they require for focused collecting projects of the highest quality, the scheme enables them to expand museum collections of fine art, design or visual culture in exciting new areas, or deepen existing holdings in imaginative ways. Applications for the third round of funding are now open. Find out more.

The Victoria and Albert Museum Photography Curators’ Training Programme

Art Fund is supporting the Victoria and Albert Museum to run a two-year pilot programme to help the development of curatorial expertise in art photography, working with regional partners Nottingham City Museum and Galleries, and Museums Sheffield, which were selected through an open competition. Both partners have extensive art photography collections but no dedicated photography curator.

We recruited two trainee curators to spend approximately six months under the guidance of a curator in the photographs section of the V&A, gaining specialist knowledge of photographic history as well as skills related to working with photography collections. Following the initial six months, the trainees will each spend a further six months at institutions run by the partners – one at Nottingham Castle Museum, and the other at the Graves Gallery in Sheffield – culminating in an exhibition, publication, collection catalogue or new collecting policy.

Arts Council Collection Curators’ Days

Arts Council Collection Curators’ Days provide an invaluable forum for curators from around the country to meet and network. Six events happen per year, each with a special focus, either looking at particular areas of professional practice or visiting new buildings and important exhibitions.

The Arts Council Collection and Art Fund are delighted to announce a new partnership to develop and document a series of joint events to benefit curators over the course of 2017 and 2018 as part of the Arts Council Collection’s Curators’ Days programme. Download the programme for spring and summer 2018.

The new partnership will see both organisations working together over the next two years on joint day-long events. The focus and format will be decided by the Arts Council Collection and Art Fund and in each case will have particular relevance to an area of work shared by both organisations. The partnership will enable increased digital engagement and documentation of events that are part of the Curators’ Days programme; documentation will then be made available to curators and shared online by both organisations.