Skip to Main Content

Summer Lecture Series 2017 Behind the Scenes at the National Gallery of Art: Curators and their Roles: Collections, Exhibitions, Acquisitions, and Research

Museum curators have many responsibilities: acquiring, caring for, and presenting works of art; researching and writing scholarly content; and organizing temporary exhibitions of works borrowed from other institutions and from private owners. At smaller museums there may be only a few curators, and they are often expected to have wide-ranging knowledge. At large institutions with diverse collections, such as the National Gallery of Art, curators must be experts in the art of specific periods, regions, or media. In this lecture, held on August 27, 2017, Franklin Kelly, deputy director and chief curator at the National Gallery of Art, examines the various roles that curators play in the functioning of today’s museums and in shaping the visitor’s experience of art.