A curator, museum is the person in charge of most of the content displayed and acquired by the museum he or she works for. The curator works to decide what is shown in the museum and how it is displayed, as well as the context and placement of the exhibition. Curators are specialized by the type of museum, and facilities dedicated to art, history, anthropology, or physical science will all have at least one person in this managerial position with an extensive, strong background and set of credentials in the subject matter.
For museum visitors, the most visible aspect of what a curator does can be observed as soon as one enters the building. A museum curator decides how the exhibits—whether they're works of art, historical documents or uniforms, or sets of dinosaur bones—are set up within the museum. The curator will typically work with an artistic and design team to help determine various traffic patterns for museum visitors. They will then build the exhibits around these observed paths. Curators also control content and how it is displayed. Most museums are typically places where contact is strictly forbidden, but many modern facilities recognize the importance of interactivity. A curator will utilize electronics and computer technology in creating hands-on displays for guests to help them understand the concepts the museum is centered around.
Most curators will have a postgraduate degree in this specialty field, and they will likely have experience in museum work at some lower level of responsibility before applying for this position. Most museum curators work regular business hours in an office environment, but field trips and travel are very much an accepted part of the job.
Curator, Museum Tasks
Oversee the operation of the museum and off-site area storage.
Build rapport with donors and potential donors, and negotiate to acquire specific collections or individual items.
Assist in developing programs and special events.
Assist in developing a long-term plan for rotating exhibits with the goal of reaching new and diverse audiences.
Coordinate with the collections committee to ensure additions follow the museum's collection philosophy.