Job Opportunity: Indigenous Curatorial Assistant

The Polygon Gallery exhibits photography and media art, emphasising contemporary Canadian work within the context of historical and international art. Operating as Presentation House Gallery for 40 years, the organization presented more than 300 exhibitions and earned a reputation as one of Canada’s most adventurous public art institutions. In November 2017, the organization opened its new, purpose-built home on the North Vancouver waterfront, elevating a world-class gallery’s facility to a level equal with its reputation.

Job Summary
Reporting to the Assistant Curator, the Indigenous Curatorial Assistant will support the development and implementation of The Polygon Gallery’s Response Program. Piloted in 2014, the Response Program is a series of workshops, discussions, events, and a publication organised in collaboration with Capilano University’s First Nations Student Society (FNSS) around issues of decolonisation. 2020 will see the first new iteration of Response since its original run in 2014-2015, which was inspired by Indigenous artist Carey Newman’s installation The Witness Blanket on Capilano University’s campus. The successful candidate will play a key role in establishing Response as a vital, ongoing part of The Polygon’s annual outreach programs. The part-time position is an expected commitment of three days (21 hours) a week, with some flexibility.

Key Responsibilities
Along with supporting The Polygon’s curatorial department, the successful candidate will research and propose ideas for Response Program events, contributors, and collaborators; work closely with the FNSS and Indigenous Independent Digital Filmmaking program (IIDF) to implement workshops, conversations, and presentations at The Polygon Gallery and Capilano University, among other sites; liaise with Elders, knowledge keepers, First Nations communities, and other cultural partners; and assist with administrative duties for the Response Program. The Indigenous Curatorial Assistant will also help to organise the installation of exhibited works and screenings related to the Response Program, and will play a key role in coordinating the publication. In addition, he/she/they will also contribute to research for a forthcoming exhibition that draws from substantial archival material to examine the ways in which local Indigenous Peoples represented themselves and their Nations in Canadian media throughout the twentieth century.

The successful candidate will be an Indigenous Canadian Citizen (First Nations, Inuit, Métis), with preference given to members of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, Tsleil-Waututh, and Musqueam Nations. Candidates should have experience, or demonstrable interest in, educational and cultural programming. We are seeking a highly organised individual with excellent communication skills, capable of liaising with multiple parties in a clear, respectful, and efficient manner. Strong writing and editing ability is valuable but not essential. A degree or advanced studies in education, art history, cultural studies, or a related field would be an asset.


Monday, June 22, 2020. The successful applicant will begin work on Monday, July 13, 2020. Please send all cover letters and résumés to Justin Ramsey, Assistant Curator, at