Curating the Art Atmosphere

In the real-world curating means caring. Yet, the art world feels rather different from reality, particularly magical. Curating, by the definition, means choosing pieces to be put on display at an art gallery, museum, or a similar setting. Curators do much more than just deciding on what is worth being displayed and what is not; they. If the pieces were just put on the wall without effort of creating an atmosphere, the display would simply be a collection of random arts.


The goal of a curator, as explained by various major art museum curators in the United States, is to interpret a collection and find a way to inspire and inform the public with the given materials. So, curators create a bond between the intention of an artist and what the public should interpret. There are some specific goals curators try to accomplish during the process. Such as meaningful selection related to the topic of the exhibit, organization of the entire display, and a way to present for a better understanding of what the artist attempts to convey.


Curators are usually assigned to an exhibit by the organization that hosts the exhibit. Then, they take place in everything after. The organizations rely on the curator for what happens next, and they never do more than that. The process continues with artists trying to catch the curator’s eyes. Curators look for a specific theme before the selection process begins, so the first step is to decide whether or not the artist’s story matches the exhibit’s. Then they look at the quality of art, and following that, comes the publicity of the artist. Better publicity means more success, and curators aim to have the potential for a larger crowd at their exhibits. The presentation process begins if an artist’s art work can pass all these steps.


However, the curator’s job does not end when the exhibit opens. While organizations that assign curators have all the publicists, the curators is the ones who do the critical jobs. Who could know what to say in front of a room full of cameras? The answer is, definitely the person who created everything inside that room.


Curated Exhibit Visit

Still, there are arguments about curators as their job comes to mind first when considering an exhibit, and occasionally, their names are of a larger font than the artists’. Steven Rosenbaum of Forbes started to question the curators’ credibility. The use of curating started to increase after pop culture came to life. Nowadays, when people buy items of furniture, they are curating. They have an idea for the furniture in the house. What term could better fit than caring about the main theme in the house, curating? They try to create a personality for their house. The task is just the same as that of a curator’s.


Hans Ulrich Obrist, a famous curator, speaks on this topic: “One of my childhood heroes was Sergei Diaghilev. He didn't dance. He wasn't a choreographer. He didn't compose. He didn't direct. But he was, to use a term the writer JG Ballard said to me in an interview, a junction-maker.” This is the perfect definition of curating. They do what is required of them. Still, it needs some more comprehension, because Hans’ parents believed that he was practicing medicine, and considering curating meant caring, Obrist’s parents were not completely in the wrong. After his first exhibit, they finally understood their son’s real job.


Hans Ulrich Obrist


In short, a curator’s job could be explained with one single word, caring. Caring for art, helping it display the persona it has, and preserving it when the visitors come to see and when their cameras click. Every curator practices medicine in some way; it is not for people but it is for art.


Works Cited:


Tucker, Lucy Lea. “The Art of Curating… Art” BigLife Magazine, https://www.biglifemag.com/the-art-of-curating-art/


“Catching the Eye of a Curator” Artwork Archive, https://www.artworkarchive.com/blog/catching-the-eye-of-a-curator


Richman-Abdou, Kelly. “What is Curating? See Why More and More People are Interested in Becoming Curators” My Modern MET, https://mymodernmet.com/what-is-curating/


Jeffries, Stuart and Groves, Nancy. “Hans Ulrich Obrist: the art curation” The Guardian, https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/mar/23/hans-ulrich-obrist-art-curator


Neuendorf, Henri. “Art Demystified: What Do Curators Do?” ArtNet News, https://news.artnet.com/art-world/art-demystified-curators-741806

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