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AAMC International Engagement Programme for UK-based curators

This programme is a collaboration between Art Fund and the US-based Association of Art Museum Curators Foundation, to enable UK curators to travel, network and deepen international relationships through creating opportunities for genuine exchange and learning.

The Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) Foundation Engagement Programme for International Curators (EPIC) fosters exchange and partnership between UK-based curators (Awardees) and US-based curators (Liaisons). The programme offers curators a rare and valuable platform for cross-cultural networking and exchange. By engaging with their counterparts, participants build and/or strengthen international relationships, lead multi-national conversations, and advance their professional skills. Partnerships are not project-based, but instead specifically focus on the reciprocity of information, experiences, and insights to help curators gain new perspectives, approach challenges with fresh ideas, and encourage global thinking. You can find out more about the programme here.

In 2023 Art Fund and AAMC are inviting two UK-based and two US-based curators to take part in the 2023 programme, which has been developed with an aim to enable UK curators to engage meaningfully and with authority on the international stage, developing their own experience and learning while also raising the profile of their institutions and collections abroad. Through this programme we hope new relationships will be brokered between institutions in the UK and internationally, stimulating collaboration on all areas of activity from research, to loans and public programmes.

Taking place throughout 2023, this fully funded programme includes funding to travel and attend the AAMC Art Curators Conference in New York in May 2023; support for two in-person visits – one in-person visit by the U.K. Awardee at the U.S. Liaison’s institution, and another in-person visit by the U.S. Liaison to the U.K. Awardee’s institution; receive an invitation to the AAMC Foundation’s Program Alumni Reception; to enjoy a 2-year AAMC membership allowing access to AAMC’s suite of curatorial development opportunities; and to receive complimentary Art Fund membership for two years.

International Awardees and US Liaisons will work together to programme a webinar that would be presented to the full AAMC membership, developing the themes and content collaboratively.

This year’s conference will take place 6 – 9 May 2023 in New York. Through a hybrid format, AAMC hopes to ensure access to the Conference content to much of our audiences and allow for a range of engagement with our sessions. The programme will include live and virtual speakers on panels and keynotes alongside in-person and virtual networking and socialising opportunities.

Questions that arise from the 2023 theme will include:

How can we find ways to shift the power away from a singular, curatorial voice to develop methods where curators take the role of facilitators in a process of learning and discovery, equally engage with colleagues in the creation process, and share their leadership? How can we learn from grassroots initiatives that seek to reinvent structures in our arts organizations? How can art institutions empower their communities, for example by serving as mass vaccination sites, voter registration centers, and places of relief for activists for change? How can curators lift up and give power to the unseen and unheard to highlight and address the deep fissures that arise from the erasure of people and cultures in our academies and arts organizations?

Eligibility and criteria

  • Applicants must be art curators at non-profit organisations, with direct responsibility for works of art. In addition, curators and others who work a minimum of 50% of the time for/with non-profit organisations will be considered
  • Please note that curators working in four-wall collecting and non-collecting, community-based, and non-four wall organisations are eligible. Multiple curators from one museum are eligible
  • Applicants must live and work in the United Kingdom
  • All applicants are required to commit to participating in all program components at the time of application, including all the deadlines (non-negotiable).

Applications that fulfil the following criteria are particularly encouraged:

  • Curators without existing strong ties to US partners and the overall international curatorial network are the ideal candidate(s) for this programme
  • Applications from curators without access travel funding and/or without professional development support are particularly encouraged to apply
  • Applications that offer connections/reflections towards diversity, equity, and inclusion within museums and arts organisations, recognising the value of challenging and changing traditional understandings of art and history, and contributing to art organizations as places for meaningful and timely public discourse and experience
  • Applications that speak to AAMC Foundation’s diversity policy that “all of our programming and overall efforts shall strive to be representative of diversity: across self-identifications (by nation, gender, creed, race, ethnicity), types of institutional mission, and regional position of participants. The more diverse our voices, the more dynamic our offerings.”
  • Applications from those representative of diversity by self-identifiers, including race, ethnicity, and gender.

Funding range

Programme components and other benefits include:

  • All participants receive complimentary registration, travel and accommodation for six days to attend the 2023 Art Curators Conference and Alumni Reception held in NYC May 6 - 9, 2023.
  • Pairings will have two in-person visits during the program. One in-person visit by the U.K Awardee at the U.S Liaison’s institution, and another in-person visit by the U.S. Liaison to the U.K Awardee’s institution before November 1, 2023. These trips are not expected to last more than 5 business days, funding is provided for these trips and accommodation, along with a per-diem. All trips must be booked and approved at least 8 weeks in advance.
  • U.K Awardees and U.S Liaisons receive two-years of full AAMC Foundation Community Access, including professional development activities and website access, which includes professional resources, a webinar archive, and a member directory of 1,500 curators.
  • U.K Awardees receive two years Art Fund membership
  • Pairings meet at least three times virtually before November 1, 2023.
  • Pairings will work together with the additional EPIC U.K & U.S pairing to develop a webinar for the full AAMC Foundation audience.
  • The pairing will discuss and develop the goals submitted within the program application throughout the program. These goals can centre on many areas of focus, such as professional development, leadership advancement, project management and development, scholarly and research pursuits and methodologies, and more.
  • Participants are required to provide a mid-program check-in, a final report and program evaluation survey at the end of the program, in December 2023.

The deadline to apply is 12pm US ET on Thursday 11 January 2023.

Get in touch

If you wish, please feel free to contact the Programmes team at Art Fund to discuss your proposal before applying.

How to apply

For more details please visit the AAMC website.

Click here to submit your application

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