Intern, Curatorial Summer

Summer 2023

Position Title: Intern

Position Type: In-person in Bentonville, AR for eight weeks (June 5-July 28, 2023) 

Department:  Curatorial

Reports to: Assistant Curator

To apply for this position, visit: Application review begins February 13, 2023. Intern selected by March 10, 2023.


Art Bridges is the vision of philanthropist and arts patron Alice Walton. The mission of Art Bridges is to expand access to American art in all regions across the United States. Since 2017, Art Bridges has been creating and supporting programs that bring outstanding works of American art out of storage and into communities. Art Bridges partners with a growing network of over 215 museums of all sizes and locations to provide financial and strategic support for exhibition development, loans from the Art Bridges collection, and programs designed to educate, inspire, and deepen engagement with local audiences. The Art Bridges Collection represents an expanding vision of American art from the 19th century to present day and encompasses multiple media and voices.

Internship Summary:

The Curatorial department seeks one intern for Summer 2023. Art Bridges summer interns will live and work in Bentonville for the eight-week session (June 5-July 28, 35 hours per week). Art Bridges will provide travel to and from Bentonville and housing for the duration of the internship. Applicants from all regions across the United States are encouraged to apply. Art Bridges is committed to a diverse workforce and to providing training for the next generation of museum professionals. Students from historically underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply. We do not require prior internship experience or an art-related major. 

The intern will assist Curatorial with the research and stewardship of the Art Bridges collection as well as assisting in various other curatorial initiatives.

This internship will provide experiential learning that aligns with the knowledge and theories taught to students in the classroom, with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. Learning will be guided and evaluated by experienced professionals. Summer interns will interact and participate in programming with other interns at Crystal Bridges, the Momentary, Walton Family Foundation, and beyond. Further, they will participate in the Art Bridges Speaker Series, reading groups, site visits, professional development workshops, and more. The intern should be prepared to work in a fast-paced team environment and will finish the internship having gained broad experience in various aspects of collection research, curatorial writing, and exhibition development.

Internship Benefits and Perks:

  • Compensation: $16/hour and/or course credit, 35 hours/week
  • Travel costs (flights, transportation to/from the airport, and baggage fees) covered by Art Bridges
  • Residential housing within walking or biking distance of the Art Bridges office.

Please note that a small number of interns will need to share a bedroom.

  • Free rental bikes for the summer
  • Participation in the Art Bridges Speaker Series
    • Past guests include: Brooke Lampley (Vice Chairman of Fine Arts, Sotheby’s), Jason Herrick (Chief Philanthropy Officer, The Metropolitan Museum of Art), Nisa Mackie (Director of Learning & Audience Engagement, MoMA), Helena Huang (Project Director, Art for Justice Fund), and Allison Glenn (Senior Curator, Public Art Fund)
  • Site visits to regional cultural institutions
    • Past trips include: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the Momentary, The Museum of Native American History (MONAH), the Tyson Collection, and Creative Arkansas Community Hub & Exchange (CACHE). 
  • Overnight trip to Tulsa, Little Rock, or Kansas City with the Art Bridges Fellows and other interns in Bentonville
  • Professional development workshops
    • Past topics include: resume building, cover letter writing, interview preparation, expanding Art Bridges experiences for future opportunities and jobs
    • DEAI training and coaching
    • Networking opportunities with staff across Art Bridges and within other regional cultural institutions and organizations
    • Social events and mixers with interns from Crystal Bridges, Walton Family Foundation, and more
  • One-on-one introductory meeting with Art Bridges CEO
  • Intern-led public speaking program, This American Art Life, in which summer interns present on current art news with support of the Curatorial department
  • Regular intern-exclusive coffee hours
  • Additional recreational and social activities such as cooking classes, forest therapy, biking days, and staff events

Activities and Learning Experiences will include:

  • Potential partner research
  • Writing and editing copy for various projects, including collection research
  • Collaborating with curators, program administrators, education/programming staff, registrars, web developers, and others
  • Meeting attendance:
    • Attending All Staff and department meetings/brainstorming sessions
    • Attending project meetings
    •  Attending meetings with partners
    • Participating in educational activities such as: speaker series, lunch and learns, book club, etc.
  • Creating a capstone project relevant to the accomplishments and duties performed by the intern, to be presented to all interns and mentors at the conclusion of the internship
  • Other duties as assigned

Preferred candidates will be passionate about expanding access to art with skills in critical thinking, problem-solving, research, communications, writing, and building interpersonal relationships. The intern should possess intellectual curiosity, flexibility, and openness to give and receive feedback. They will be interested in American art, community engagement, social justice, and diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion (DEAI). Applicants must be prepared for a hands-on learning experience. The intern will have the opportunity to work with diverse partners, listen, ask questions, adapt, and collaborate.

Attributes of an Ideal Candidate:

  • Currently enrolled in a university degree program (at the undergraduate or graduate level) or a recent graduate with an interest in entering the workforce as an emerging arts professional
  • Collaborative and open-minded
  • Detail-oriented and organized
  • Dependable and punctual
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite is required, and familiarity with research and Web-based search tools is strongly preferred

Physical Demands, Work Environment & Requirements:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an intern to successfully perform the essential functions of this opportunity. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Physical Demands: In the work environment described herein, the position requires work at a desk and utilizing a computer for prolonged periods of time, and excellent eye/hand coordination.
  • Work Environment: In-person
  • Computer Equipment: Laptops will be provided to interns.
  • Background Check: Successful completion of a criminal background and reference check.
  • Confidentiality: Must maintain the confidentiality of all non-public information

Other Information:

While this internship provides an opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge, skills and ability, it does not create any expressed or implied guarantee of future employment with Art Bridges. 

All interns will be considered temporary employees and responsible for all state and federal withholdings from all earnings and payments. Interns will be ineligible for health & retirement benefits, but will be covered under workers compensation insurance during the internship duration and while performing activities for Art Bridges.  

Vaccination Policy:

In accordance with our duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards, and to do our part in safeguarding the health of our co-workers and their families as well as the community at large from COVID-19 that will be reduced by vaccination, we are requiring all Art Bridges staff and interns to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by their start date as a condition of employment. According to the CDC, “fully vaccinated” means it has been two weeks since a person received the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna or the single dose of Johnson & Johnson.

We strongly hope this policy decision will help to change the current landscape of infection rates in our community by creating a sense of urgency and proactivity. Our desire is to continue to fulfill our vision of transforming lives through Art Bridges mission. To do this, our first priority is to create a safe workplace.

Art Bridges’ Commitment to DEAI

At Art Bridges, diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are central to all work and decisions within our organization. We support our colleagues and our partners in learning and growing together to make this important work part of our daily lives.

Equal Opportunity Employment:

Art Bridges is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to building and maintaining a culturally diverse workplace that is free of discrimination and harassment of any kind. We encourage women, minorities, individuals with disabilities and veterans to apply. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, veteran status, or any other status protected by the laws or regulations in the locations where we operate.