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Community Curator Awards



Community Curator Awards 2017:


The first curator awards have been announced:


About the Community Curator Awards


The Somerville Museum invites applications for public exhibits at the museum. Selected community curators will receive a seed grant of $2,500 and exhibit space in the galleries at One Westwood Road. Requests for 2018 curator award proposals will be posted soon.

The Somerville Museum welcomes community curators, both those with extensive resumes and those with no experience to present exhibitions in its galleries. We encourage applicants to visit the museum and to become familiar with past exhibitions before submitting a proposal. Strong proposals will be clear and concise, will present innovative & engaging ideas, and will draw a diverse group of participants & visitors.


Selection criteria:


    • Proposals can be on any topic but preference is given to exhibits that incorporate a connection to the city of Somerville, past, present or future, and serve to enhance understanding and appreciation of the history, arts and culture of the city. All submissions are welcome and will be judged on the quality of the proposal.

  • Creative use of artifacts and engaging exhibit design is important. Use of the Museum’s collections is encouraged but not required.

  • Collaboration with other artists, scholars and like-minded local organizations is strongly encouraged.

  • Exhibits should foster dialogue among local artists, historians and educators and the broader community to enrich understanding and lifelong learning. Innovative programming and outreach to engage diverse audiences is therefore sought as part of all Museum shows. Examples of programming include concerts, readings, film screenings, gallery tours, workshops and talks at area schools.

  • Selected exhibits must be installed by the applicant within two years of receiving the award.

Additional Information:


Available Funding: Selected curators will receive a seed grant of $2,500 from the Somerville Museum to assist with the costs of presenting the exhibit.

Exhibition Information: Duration of exhibits is typically for 8-12 weeks.

Examples of previous exhibits

Somerville Museum Community Curator Application 2016

1) Contact Information: Name, affiliation (if appropriate) address, phone and email, website


2) Summary: Exhibit Title and one sentence that summarizes the exhibit.

3) Curatorial Statement: One-page statement describing the project and the artifacts submitted.

4) Partners: List of potential collaborators and their roles.


5) Outreach & Programming: What kinds of community programs and engagement within the exhibit do you envision? What is your plan for outreach and what specific audiences do you hope to include?  


6) Preference for exhibition time: Are there any special considerations that would influence the timing of your exhibit? Duration of exhibits is typically for 8-12 weeks and selected exhibits must be installed by the applicant within two years of receiving the award.

7) Relevance: How is this exhibit relevant to the people of Somerville? Has this exhibition or grouping of artists shown anywhere else? If so, where, and how would you modify it for presentation at the Somerville Museum?


8) Experience: Describe your background and any relevant experience that has prepared you to curate this exhibit.


9) Background: How did you hear about the Community Curator program? Have you visited the museum and if so, which show(s) did you see?

10) Attach six to ten images that typify the artifacts to be included in your exhibit.

Submit proposals to:

Somerville Museum

One Westwood Road

Somerville, MA 02143

Include a SASE for return of materials, if desired.

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