Employment Opportunity – Associate Curator

The Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens seeks an Associate Curator to bring the Museum’s Permanent Collection and exhibitions to life for our visitors. Collection displays and exhibitions should illuminate diverse areas of art history and artistic production; reinterpret familiar periods, styles, or stories; embrace themes or topics with strong community relevance; challenge the Museum’s audiences’ preconceived opinions; and provide a platform for dynamic learning opportunities and meaningful personal experiences that further the Museum’s mission. 

About the Cummer Museum

The Cummer Museum, an AAM accredited institution in Jacksonville, Florida, maintains one of the most significant collections of European and American art in the Southeast. The Museum's founders, Arthur and Ninah Cummer, assembled a private collection of 60 Old Master and 19th-century American paintings, forming the nucleus of the permanent collection. In 56 years, the permanent collection has grown through purchase and donation to more than 5,000 objects, whose dates of origin range from 2000 B.C. to the present. The strength of the collection is European (1300 - 1920) and American (1800 - 1940) paintings, but representative examples of ancient Mediterranean art, Japanese art, and 20th-century American art are included in the collection. The Museum also features one of the three finest collections of early manufacture (1710 - 1750) Meissen porcelain in the world.

The Cummer Museum boasts one of the most important and delightful gardens in Northeast Florida. Idyllically located on the banks of the St. Johns River, the gardens have a fascinating history, stretching back more than 100 years, and bear the imprint of some of the foremost names in landscape design and horticulture, including Ossian Cole Simonds, Ellen Biddle Shipman, Thomas Meehan and Sons, and the fabled Olmsted firm. The involvement of these prestigious firms gives national importance to the gardens at the Museum. Throughout the year, the gardens are ablaze with rare horticultural specimens nestled under a canopy of mature live oak trees. In addition to the lush plantings, features such as reflecting pools, fountains, arbors, antique ornaments, and sculptures help create a special outdoor space that provides a perfect complement to the Museum's collections. The Cummer Gardens are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Throughout the institution’s history, the collections have served as the cornerstone in the Museum’s mission – to “engage and inspire through the arts, gardens, and education.” In accordance with the expressed wishes of its founder, Ninah May Holden Cummer, it seeks to serve as “a center of beauty and culture” for the benefit of “all of the people.” Educational programs are presented through the Museum’s nationally recognized interactive learning center, Art Connections, winner of the prestigious IMLS Museum Services Award.

Essential Functions

  • Support the Cummer Museum mission, vision, and values by exhibiting the following behaviors: excellence and competence, collaboration, innovation, respect for the individual, commitment to our community, and accountability/ownership.
  • In conjunction with the Chief Curator, develop/identify temporary exhibitions and permanent collection displays that will engage existing and target audiences.
  • Assist with the creation of gallery presentations that are aesthetically impressive and support visitor experience goals as described in the Museum’s Visitor Experience Master Plan.
  • Act as coordinating curator for package exhibitions.
  • Integrate collection research and educational mission into gallery didactics, lectures, and public programs for internal and external audiences.
  • Research, write, and present, in written and oral form, information on permanent and special exhibitions for local, regional, and national audiences and professional organizations.
  • Assist Chief Curator with development and achievement of curatorial budget and multi-year exhibition calendar.
  • Partner with Curatorial team members in the preparation and management of the exhibition schedule and permanent collection displays.
  • Work collaboratively with other departments to ensure Museum goals and objectives are met.
  • Maintain active relationships with artists, community members, lenders, donors, and professional colleagues.
  • Represent the Museum through media/public interviews.
  • Promote the Cummer Museum through the staff “Speakers Bureau” initiative.
  • Participate in the development of grants.
  • Research acquisitions for the permanent collection.
  • Other job-related duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

  • Masters Degree in art history, with a principal focus on 19th/20th-century American art but interests that reach across countries and chronologies.
  • Minimum of three years of professional work experience in a museum.
  • Knowledge of the methods, techniques, and procedures involved in the interpretation and exhibition of art for diverse audiences.
  • Strong written/oral communication skills and public speaking abilities.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with a wide variety of people.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with staff, visitors, volunteers, donors, collectors, professional colleagues, and other members of the museum community.
  • Strong organizational, planning, and research skills.
  • Must have excellent work habits, including a willingness to work the hours necessary to get the job done, especially when important deadlines cause greater than normal departmental pressures.
  • Willingness to work flexible hours including mornings, evenings, and weekends.


  • Work in an office environment in a publicly accessible building
  • Ability to do some heavy lifting
  • Valid Florida driver license

Qualified applicants send cover letter, résumé and salary requirements to the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens, Attn: Human Resources Department, 829 Riverside Avenue, Jacksonville, FL 32204 or jobs@cummermuseum.org.