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Curatorial Fellowships

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellowship

The National Gallery of Art hosts a postdoctoral curatorial fellowship funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This is a two-year fellowship with the possibility of renewal for a third year. The fellowship provides curatorial training and supports scholarly research related to the collection of the National Gallery of Art. The fellow is fully integrated into a specific curatorial department with duties, privileges, and status equivalent to those of an assistant curator. Time is divided between specific projects and general curatorial work within the department, including research on the collection and new acquisitions, work on the presentation of the collection, participation in aspects of special exhibition projects, and opportunities to give public lectures. The fellow will plan and complete a project in consultation with the supervising curator.

Through weekly gatherings and discussions, the fellow takes part in research-sharing and sessions that explore the inner workings of the Gallery.

Fellowship Period

The fellow must be in residence at the National Gallery of Art during the fellowship period, which lasts for two years, starting as early as the January after the fellow is selected.


Consideration is given to candidates working in fields represented by the Gallery’s permanent collection of European and American art, as well as candidates with special research focuses on African American art or art of the African diaspora, Latinx art and art history, and Native American art history. The doctoral degree in art history (or the equivalent in countries outside the United States) must be or have been officially conferred within five years (preferably three years) of the start date of the fellowship. Applicants from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. This is an international program. If you have questions about your eligibility, please contact the program administrator at [email protected] or (202) 842-6257.


The fellow will receive an annual salary of $59,000, plus research and travel expenses up to $5,000 per year.

The Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow is a full-time term employee of the National Gallery of Art and is eligible for coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance Program. The fellow, using an authorized public transportation method, will receive an employer-provided fare subsidy to apply toward monthly transit costs.

Equal Opportunity

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for an internship, fellowship, or research assistantship without regard to race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, marital status, citizenship, or any other protected status. The National Gallery of Art offers equal opportunity and treatment to all who apply and is committed to diversity.

Application Timeline and Procedures

Deadline: October 27, 2019

By the date above, all application materials must be submitted online and in English. We will not accept applications or related materials via email, postal mail, or in person. There is no fee to apply to any of the internships.

The online application requires you to provide the following:

  • Cover letter addressing your interest in the fellowship position
  • Full curriculum vitae of education, professional experience, honors, awards, and publications
  • A statement, not to exceed 1,000 words, specifying your areas of research and their relationship to the Gallery’s collection and activities.
  • Copy of a published paper or recent writing sample
  • Contact information for three recommenders (at least one academic and one professional). Once you have submitted your recommenders’ names, titles, and email addresses, they will automatically be emailed instructions for uploading their letters online. Please note that each letter must include the recommender’s complete title and contact information.

The deadline for all application materials, including transcripts and letters of recommendation, is October 27 at 5:00 p.m. (EST).

Interview Week of November 18, 2019

Interviews of finalists are tentatively scheduled for mid-November. Only finalists for the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellowship will be contacted for interviews.

All applicants will be notified by the first Friday in December following the application deadline.

Review Process

All applications will be reviewed by a selection committee composed of National Gallery of Art staff.

Department of Gallery and Studio Learning
Division of Education
National Gallery of Art
2000B South Club Drive
Landover, MD 20785

[email protected]
(202) 842-6257

Please do not contact Gallery curators or other department heads directly regarding possible placement or projects.

Please review a list of Frequently Asked Questions about internships.