December 18, 2007 - Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) - Seeks Director of Visual Arts
December 18, 2007

Seeks Director of Visual Arts

Just Announced: Director of Visual Arts

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), San Francisco’s premiere contemporary arts center, seeks a dynamic individual to provide leadership and creative direction for its renowned visual arts program. We’re looking for a dynamic, visionary curator who has the skills and ability to take an already highly regarded visual arts program to the next level of innovation and impact not only locally, but also nationally and internationally.

Who We Are
YBCA is a 15-year-old multidisciplinary arts center that anchors the dynamic Yerba Buena Cultural District in downtown San Francisco. YBCA works continuously to break new ground with its programs in visual art, performance and film/video, and to connect our programs to a broad cross section of the community, not just the art elite. Our facilities are comprised of two landmark buildings with 12,000 square feet of gallery space, a 94-seat Screening Room, flexible performance/meeting space and a 750-seat Theater. Institutionally, we are committed to innovation in our practices, exceptional diversity in our range of work and the engagement of audiences with art that speaks to the ideas and issues of the contemporary world. The YBCA curatorial team works collaboratively to develop organization-wide thematics, around which performances, exhibitions, films and public programs are curated and created. The opportunity and expectation exists for the Visual Arts program be a significant cornerstone of that endeavor.

What We Are Looking For
The ideal candidate will possess strong experience with and knowledge of contemporary art practice throughout the world, with a history of creating innovative and provocative exhibitions. A commitment to the full range of contemporary art is especially crucial, including the recognition that artists are breaking boundaries among disciplines and that contemporary artistic expression emanates from all cultures, including and especially, those of the Pacific Rim of which YBCA and San Francisco are a part. Institutionally, we are particularly interested in placing Bay Area artists in dialogue with artists nationally and internationally.

The position requires an inspiring leader who can articulate and advocate strongly for visual art projects, while developing and sustaining a collaborative relationship with the other curators. An ability to engage in artistic discourse in an expansive and generous manner is particularly important. Essential to the position as well, is an intellect that can absorb, discuss and explicate the ideas and aesthetics of contemporary art; the ability to write intelligently but without jargon about contemporary art; the capability to be a charismatic public speaker who can inspire audiences and stimulate donors to fund innovative projects; and a commitment to placing contemporary art at the heart of contemporary life.

The Director of Visual Arts has primary responsibility for the design and execution of the Visual Arts program at YBCA. Working under the supervision of the Executive Director and in collaboration with the curatorial team, the Director shapes the artistic agenda for the Visual Arts program through curated exhibitions and projects. Implementation of that vision is also the Director’s responsibility, which includes directing the visual arts staff to accomplish departmental objectives. As a senior member of the organizational management team, the Director plays a vital role in determining and defining the organizational culture at YBCA; participates in strategic planning and budgeting; provides leadership to the Visual Arts department and collaborates closely with other departments to the benefit of the Visual Arts program and YBCA.

Department: Visual Arts
Reports to: Executive Director
Direct Reports: Five (5)
Work Schedule: Full Time (37.5 hours/week), Evenings and Weekends as Necessary

Specific Responsibilities
• Curate and create the visual arts program at YBCA. Oversee the design and direct the installation of all YBCA exhibitions
• Collaborate with the other YBCA curators to determine curatorial direction for the institution and create specific projects that are multi disciplinary or interdisciplinary in nature

• Take a leadership role in the Development area by participating in a full range of activities thatsupport the Visual Arts department specifically and YBCA generally, including cultivation events and building relationships with individual donors

• Collaborate with Marketing and Community Engagement departments to develop and support a broad base of community participation in the exhibitions program and YBCA in general

• Supervise and manage the Visual Arts department including associate curator(s) and exhibitions staff

• Overall budgetary responsibility for the department and as part of the senior management team

• Direct the traveling exhibition program as a source of both revenue generation and extension of the YBCA brand nationally and internationally

• Other duties as assigned by the Executive Director

Minimum Qualifications
• BA degree in a Visual Arts field

• Minimum 5 years experience as a curator in a visual arts institution of note and/or independent curator of notable exhibitions

• Extensive background in and knowledge of contemporary art

• Knowledge of best practices of contemporary art museums and arts centers

• Demonstrated leadership and management ability

• Demonstrated ability to work effectively in partnership with people of diverse backgrounds

• Commitment to working collaboratively, including artistic and curatorial collaborations

• Excellent interpersonal skills; verbal and written communication skills; ability to do public presentations

How to Apply
Potential applicants are requested to send a cover letter addressing the issues and ideas raised in “What We Are Looking For” above, and a resume to Please include “Visual Art Director E-Flux” in the subject line.

Please do not send supporting materials at this time.

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA)
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