Sondra Gilman Curator of Photography

New York City, NY
Full Time

Reporting to Senior Deputy Director and Nancy and Steve Crown Family Chief Curator, the Sondra Gilman Curator of Photography will oversee the Museum's collection of photography and its photography acquisition committee. The incumbent will propose and organize exhibitions, prepare and write for accompanying scholarly publications and didactic materials, as well as develop ways in which artworks and archives can be interpreted through exhibitions, publications, events, and digital channels. Although the incumbent will have primary responsibility for the direction of the Museum's photography collection from 1900 to the present, their work will not be limited to this medium exclusively, since members of the Whitney's curatorial team work broadly across mediums and disciplines.


  • Direction of the Museum's photography collection and its Photography Acquisition Committee
  • Curation of temporary exhibitions and collection displays
  • Participation in digital strategy and initiatives relating to the collection and program
  • Work with artists, scholars, and other interested parties to access the collection
  • Collaboration with the Steven and Ann Ames Curator of Drawings and Prints on the program of the Sondra Gilman Study Center for works on paper
  • Cultivation of relationships with artists; trustees and various patron groups, including the Photography Acquisition Committee; members of the press, and colleagues at other institutions
  • Represent the Museum within the scholarly community through participation in panels, symposia, and other forums, as well as connect with broader audiences
  • Support and engage in the fundraising activities of the Museum
  • Undertake special research projects, including for the collection and acquisitions as needed
  • Supervise and mentor curatorial assistants, fellows, and interns 


  • M.A. in art history, Ph.D. preferred
  • 10 years of experience working with art
  • Extensive scholarship in the field of modern and contemporary art in the United States and a track record of exhibitions, publications, and acquisitions with particular expertise in photography from 1900 to the present.

Compensation & Benefits

  • Pay range of  $125,000 to $140,000 per annum, commensurate with experience
  • Medical, Dental, Vision, 403(B) elections
  • Generous PTO benefits
  • Commuter benefits - parking and mass transit
  • Admission to world-renowned museums across the city and nationally
  • Pet insurance and discounted membership for Citibike

The advertised pay range is not a promise of a particular wage for any specific employee. The specific compensation offered to a candidate may be dependent on a variety of factors including, but not limited to, the candidate’s experience, education, special licensing or qualifications, and other factors.

Not sure you meet 100% of our qualifications? Research shows that men apply for jobs when they meet an average of 60% of the criteria. Yet, women and other people who are systematically marginalized tend to only apply if they meet every requirement. If you believe that you could excel in this role, we encourage you to apply. We are dedicated to considering a broad array of candidates, including those with diverse workplace experiences and backgrounds. Whether you’re new to arts and culture administration, returning to work after a gap in employment, simply looking to transition, or take the next step in your career path, we will be glad to have you on our radar. Please use your cover letter to tell us about your interest in the arts and culture space and what you hope to bring to this role.

About the Whitney

The Whitney Museum of American Art, founded in 1930 by the artist and philanthropist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, houses the foremost collection of American art from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. From her vision arose the Whitney Museum of American Art, which has been championing the most innovative art of the United States for 86 years. The core of the Whitney’s mission is to collect, preserve, interpret, and exhibit American art of our time and serve a wide variety of audiences in celebration of the complexity and diversity of art and culture in the United States. Through this mission and a steadfast commitment to artists themselves, the Whitney has long been a powerful force in support of modern and contemporary art and continues to help define what is innovative and influential in American art today.


EEO Statement

The Whitney Museum of American Art is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The Museum does not discriminate because of age, sex, religion, race, color, creed, national origin, alienage or citizenship, disability, marital status, partnership status, veteran status, gender (including gender identity), sexual orientation, or any other factor prohibited by law. The Museum hires and promotes individuals solely on the basis of their qualifications for the job to be filled. The Museum encourages all qualified candidates to apply for vacant positions at all levels. This description shall not be construed as a contract of any sort for a specific period of employment.


COVID guidelines:

The health and safety of our Museum community is the highest priority. As such, the Whitney Museum is requiring all newly hired staff members to be fully vaccinated and boosted with an FDA authorized and/or approved COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment. Requests for reasonable accommodations for medical, religious, or other reasons will be considered in accordance with applicable law.


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