Call for applications

Curatorial Open Call

The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, New York, United States
Deadline: 15 December 2022

Opening reception for Heart Howls: Latin American Performance in Revolt at The 8th Floor, NYC on September 29, 2022. Photograph by Phillip Andrew Iglesias.

Opening reception for Heart Howls: Latin American Performance in Revolt at The 8th Floor, NYC on September 29, 2022. Photograph by Phillip Andrew Iglesias.

The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation announces the second in a series of open calls, giving curators, academics, and art historians a platform to stage an exhibition at The 8th Floor, a gallery and event space, at 17 West 17th St. near Union Square, NYC.

They are searching for emerging or established researchers and cultural presenters to work with to realize their pre-existing, and as-yet unrealized exhibition concept. Proposals with an experimental and/or pedagogical approach are sought for thematic group, or solo presentations. Applicants should be engaged in research which addresses themes relating to the Foundation’s mission of art and social justice, championing equity, education, access, and underrepresented narratives and practices.

The selected curator will be given an honorarium of $3000 for their work on the exhibition and $2000 for their essay in the accompanying catalog. In addition to an exhibition budget, they will be guided and supported in their administrative, planning, and promotional endeavors by the curatorial team at the Rubin Foundation. This commission is open to those who fulfill the criteria for this application and there is no fee to apply. The chosen curator will engage in all associated programming, in tandem with the resulting exhibition.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration regardless of race, color, sex, gender, age, national origin, religion, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, marital status, or any other protected status. Please note that solo applicants need to have a visa to work in the US, be permanent residents, or US Citizens, and if applying as a pair or team the individual submitting the application must have a visa to work in the US, be a permanent resident, or US Citizen.

The application portal is live here until the deadline of December 15, 2022. Results will be announced on March 1, 2023.

The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation believes in art as a cornerstone of cohesive, resilient communities and greater participation in civic life. In its mission to make art available to the broader public, in particular to underserved communities, the Foundation stages exhibitions and programs at The 8th Floor, all of which are free and open to all.

Eligibility and Criteria

  • Open to Academics, Art Historians, Curators, Graduate students, PhD candidates, and those involved in post-doctoral research.
  • Not open to undergraduate students.
  • Please note, all applicants must either have a visa to work in the US, be permanent residents, or US Citizens.
  • Have an accomplished thesis (curatorial concept) and plan for their research-driven exhibition, or have extensive existing research to back up their proposal.
  • Audience-focused educational possibilities should be inherent in the concept of the exhibition.
  • The ability to address contemporary issues of sociocultural or sociopolitical change, and imaginatively examine global narratives and histories.
  • Please note: if you applied in the last cycle you cannot apply with the same proposal, it has to be a new concept with new artists.
  • Traveling exhibitions which have already begun cannot be submitted.
  • If your project has already received funding or support please detail this support within your application, including the amount, who is providing it, and how it is intended to be used within their criteria.

Applicant Requirements

  • A professional CV detailing education and employment history, as well as any previous curatorial projects, or academic research
  • One paragraph biography of applicant(s)
  • One paragraph biography of proposed artists
  • A written thesis – in-progress or finished – not necessarily from which the curatorial concept is drawn
  • 300 word text on how your proposal aligns with the mission of the Foundation
  • 500 word statement detailing the curatorial concept for the exhibition
  • An itemized budget for your proposed exhibition
  • A PDF of your proposed checklist with images, tombstone information, and the geographic locations of objects
  • A PDF of 1-2 images for each artist in your proposal (maximum 20 images, for media works please include URL links to websites in a pdf format document only)
  • Supplemental: copy of any published papers or art/cultural criticism

For further information:


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