30th June 2009

Proposal No. 30

Curatorial transfer system

Curators are two-a-penny in the contemporary art world, where anyone can call themselves a curator, no matter their contribution to the field. In the same respect that anyone can call themselves an artist. This distinction between the two is unimportant today and has been over discussed to boredom so we won’t discuss it here.

Curators come in a number of forms of employment – freelance, employed (by a large institution, small gallery, a collector, an agency, a university, an individual, curator/researcher, curator/educator, artist/curator, curator/artist). The list continues. In each of these there can be no way of proving the true value of each curator beyond their pay packet, which can sometimes prove a false economy.

James & Jones propose to develop a transfer system where curators can be bought and sold between galleries dependent on the available budgets. Therefore the most valued curators would be sold for a large fee and new/emerging curators would be starting either as free agents or lower down the gallery system to enter the curatorial transfer market. It is hoped that through this system the valued curators would rise to the top and the charlatans would be found out.

Alongside this would be other merchandise such as a sticker album where budding curators can buy/swap stickers of their favourite curators to complete their collection. There would also be Top Trump cards of each curator with each of their skills and weaknesses to be played and swapped.

B. Jones


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