Fellowship Opportunity: Post-Doctoral Fellow in Native American Art and Curation,Yale University Art Gallery and the Department of the History of Art, Yale University

The position will provide curatorial training in a dynamic museum setting and extensive opportunities for scholarly research based on close work with Yale museum and library staff and collections, including at the Art Gallery, Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, and Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, as well as other sources. It will also offer the opportunity to conceive and teach a seminar in the History of Art Department each semester and receive mentoring on research, publication, and pedagogy.

The Fellowship is designed to support the highest level of professional development in all aspects of curatorial work. The Fellow will gain experience in collection research and cataloguing, conservation, exhibition organization, education and publications, programming, public speaking, and provenance research. The Fellow will collaborate with a broad range of Gallery staff and learn the workings of a major university museum that also serves a diverse public audience.

The Fellow will oversee a student-led installation drawn from Yale collections. In keeping with the Gallery’s educational mission, the Fellow will involve and mentor students in their work and collaborate with, encourage, and assist Yale faculty who have interests related to the collections.

The Fellow should be passionate about and qualified in the field of Native American Art – about caring for collection objects, researching and interpreting them, and presenting them to the public as both works of art and as primary resources for cultural history. The Fellow should have a keen eye for objects and design and a strong interest in museum display. S/he should be deeply committed to the educational use and potential of museum collections.

Required Skills

-Completed Ph.D. in History of Art or a related discipline specializing in Native American Art.

-Demonstrated research skills across a broad spectrum of Native American Art as well as a specialized focus within the field.

-Knowledge of and sensitivity to contemporary Native American communities and willingness to work with the Advisory Council on Native American Art and Culture.

-Developed writing and speaking skills for communicating with audiences ranging from the general public to international scholars.

-Experience in teaching undergraduate and graduate students at the university level.


-Desire and ability to build collaborative relationships and work effectively in the History of Art Department, the Gallery, and to collaborate with colleagues across the University.

The major duties and responsibilities of the Fellow are:

1. To conduct collection research, installation planning, and interpretation in collaboration with the Advisory Council on Native American Art and Culture and meet monthly, either in person or via telecommunications, with Prof. Ruth Phillips, consultant on Native American Art. 

2. To curate a significant gallery display or loan exhibition in collaboration with a group of Yale students on a subject relating to Native American Art at the end of the second year of the fellowship under the direction of the Gallery’s Curator of American Paintings and Sculpture—or another curator whose field more closely aligns with the Fellow’s and the scope of the exhibition—and Senior Deputy Director. 

3. To teach two courses per year of the Fellowship in the History of Art Department and to participate where requested in advising senior essays and other student projects. One will be a graduate seminar, one an undergraduate seminar. The syllabus must be approved in advance by, respectively, the Director of Graduate Studies and the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the History of Art Department. The Fellow must abide by all regulations governing teaching at Yale University. 

4. To participate in programs and other events and initiatives at Yale University Art Gallery. 

5. To participate fully in the intellectual life of the History of Art Department, attending lectures, events and conferences. 

The Fellow will report to the Gallery’s Curator of American Paintings and Sculpture—or another curator whose field more closely aligns with the Fellow’s—and to the Chair of the Department of the History of Art.

Start date for the position is September 1, 2018

To Apply: Please submit a letter by e-mail (PDF or MSWord format are acceptable) describing your interest in the Fellowship and relevant experience along with your CV, a writing sample, and a list of three references to Mark D. Mitchell, Holcombe T. Green Curator of American Paintings and Sculpture, Yale University Art Gallery at mark.mitchell@yale.edu.