Assistant Curator

Assistant Curator


Aspex is looking for someone with lots of energy and enthusiasm to join our small team at an extremely exciting time, as we deliver a new programme of exhibitions and events to mark our 40th anniversary in 2021.

This opportunity is part of the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries Programme, creating 50 jobs across a range of art forms for people from lower socio-economic backgrounds. 

Job Description

Salary: £19,500

Hours: Full time (35 hours per week), Fixed term 12 month contract

Responsible to: Curator/Programme Manager

Job summary: Support the Curator/Programme Manager in the planning, delivery and evaluation of Aspex’s seasonal programme of exhibitions, commissions and events.

You will be responsible for:

1. Supporting key aspects of Aspex’s ongoing exhibition and learning programmes:

● Supporting the development and presentation of artist commissions for the 40th anniversary project;

● Supporting the development of the Aspex Artists Associates programme;

● Working with the staff team to plan and deliver events;

● Promoting and maintaining productive relations with external organisations (i.e. funding bodies, professional organisations and galleries);

● Representing Aspex through attendance at events, giving talks/tours, and externally through attendance at meetings, seminars and conferences as required;

● Undertaking Duty Manager shifts as part of the staff rota during daytime opening and special events including some evenings and weekends;

2. Supporting the organisation and administration of all aspects of the artistic programme:

● Supporting the preparation of copy, images and video for the promotion of exhibitions and interpretation materials;

● Supporting the documentation, evaluation and archiving of materials for all projects;

● Liaison with artists, other galleries and agencies, transportation, insurance, preparation of contracts, budgets and records of expenditure etc;

● Supporting project delivery and installation (including condition checking), working with volunteers and freelance technicians (as required);

● Undertaking all other appropriate duties for the effective administration and operation of the gallery as required by the Curator/Programme Manager and Director.

The Assistant Curator will at all times carry out their duties with due regard to Aspex Visual Arts Trust’s Health and Safety and Equality, Diversity & Inclusion and other relevant policies.


Person Specification

All criteria are essential unless specified by (D) in which case they are desirable.


● Providing excellent customer service

● Working with artists (D)

● Writing information about art for general audiences (D)

● Handling and installation of artworks (D) Knowledge & Skills:

● Enthusiasm for contemporary visual art

● Attention to detail and ability to work accurately under pressure and to deadlines

● Excellent organisation and administrative skills

● Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal

● Ability to work independently and as part of a team

● Excellent IT skills 

The Small Print

We need someone who:

● has the legal right to work in the UK;

● is not be in full time education (12 hours or more formal study a week);

● has been working for between 2 and 5 years (not necessarily in the arts);

● is from a socio-economic background under-represented in the arts and cultural sector.

Socio-economic background is a term used to describe what is sometimes referred to as level of privilege or class. Common measures of socio-economic background include parental qualifications; parental occupation; type of school attended and eligibility for free school meals.

A lower socio-economic background is indicated by multiple factors and to identify as being from a lower socio-economic background you may meet two or more of the following criteria:

● Attended only state-funded school or college;

● Eligible for free school meals at secondary school;

● Were the first generation to attend higher education in your family;

 ● Grew up in a household where at age 14, the primary carer held an occupation that can be described loosely as Unemployed / never worked; Routine manual and service occupations e.g. van driver, cleaner, porter, waiter/waitress, bar staff; Semi-routine manual and service occupations e.g. postal worker, security guard, machine worker, receptionist, sales assistant.

Aspex welcomes applications from all members of the community, irrespective of gender, race, disability and age. It is a learning organisation and allows all of its employees to work flexibly, to ensure that personal/caring responsibilities, artistic practices or roles in other organisations can be maintained.

Closing date for applications is Midday, Tuesday 24 November 2020.

To download the full Job Pack, Click Here.

Interviews will be held via Zoom on Wednesday 9 December 2020 with three members of the Aspex staff team (Director, Joanne Bushnell; Curator/Programme Manager, Vickie Fear; and Learning & Events Assistant, Harriet Carr).

We held a free Open Day style meeting via Zoom for anyone interested in the Assistant Curator job. This was an opportunity to ask Joanne Bushnell and Vickie Fear questions about the Assistant Curator job and what we are looking for in applications. To listen to the recording, Click Here.

Aspex is an equal opportunities employer and we aim to take positive action to encourage applications from women aged 18-35 and candidates from lower socio-economic backgrounds, and/or with other protected characteristics (i.e. disability, sexuality, ethnicity).