cu·​ra·​tor | \ˈkyu̇r-ˌā-tər, ˈkyər-;kyu̇-ˈrā-;ˈkyu̇r-ə-, ˈkyər- \

Definition of curator 

: one who has the care and superintendence of something especially : one in charge of a museum, zoo, or other place of exhibit

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Other Words from curator

curatorial \ ˌkyu̇r-​ə-​ˈtȯr-​ē-​əl , ˌkyər-​ \ adjective
curatorship \ ˈkyu̇r-​ˌā-​tər-​ˌship , ˈkyər-​ ; kyu̇-​ˈrā-​ ; ˈkyu̇r-​ə-​, ˈkyər-​ \ noun

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In a good-sized art museum, each curator is generally responsible for a single department or collection: European painting, Asian sculpture, Native American art, and so on. Curatorial duties include acquiring new artworks, caring for and repairing objects already owned, discovering frauds and counterfeits, lending artworks to other museums, and mounting exhibitions of everything from Greek sculpture to 20th-century clothing.

Examples of curator in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Artist and curator Linda Doll has brought together in the exhibit 10 local signature member level artists from the American Watercolor Society and National Watercolor Society. Linda Mcintosh,, "Blue Star families honored," 13 July 2018 Netflix is a creator, curator and distributor of entertainment. John D. Stoll, WSJ, "Why Companies Have the Urge to Merge," 15 June 2018 The Couturier was co-curated by Mark Wilson, chief curator of the Groninger Museum, and a longtime friend of Alaïa. Mary Dellas, The Cut, "Azzedine Alaïa’s Last Exhibit Will Include Unseen Pieces," 7 May 2018 Sean Mullaney, artist and curator, has brought together wide-ranging group of artists working in variety of media, each with close connection to Clifton Cultural Arts Center, to interpret theme. Rasputin Todd,, "Things to do this week in Cincinnati: May 1-6," 30 Apr. 2018 McKissick had scheduled a meeting for Nov. 9, 2016, to pitch her idea of putting on a festival in collaboration with different curators and creatives — not expecting Donald Trump would be elected president. Jessi Roti,, "Feast aims to improve Chicago's food deserts through community-focused music and arts," 12 July 2018 And this natural ability is fortified by constant research — visiting exhibitions, making studio visits and maintaining relations with artists, gallerists, curators and other collectors. George Varga,, "Cheech Marin of Cheech & Chong talks about pot, comedy, music, golf and his Chicano art museum," 11 July 2018 The exhibition is curated by Jason Wright, publisher of Heads Magazine, an exhibition in the form of a quarterly publication, curated by word-of- mouth invitations from curators and contributors. charlotteobserver, "What’s up this week in Charlotte’s visual arts?," 5 July 2018 The exhibition continues the Legion of Honor’s smart recent turn to use its best resources — excellent curators and a collection with strong highlights — set into broader contexts. Charles Desmarais,, "‘Truth and Beauty’ at Legion of Honor: Pure visual pleasure of an idiosyncratic style," 29 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'curator.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of curator

1561, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for curator

borrowed from Latin cūrātor "one who looks after, superintendent, guardian," from cūrāre "to watch over, attend" + -tor, agent suffix — more at cure entry 2

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Dictionary Entries near curator





curator bonis



Statistics for curator

Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for curator

The first known use of curator was in 1561

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More Definitions for curator



English Language Learners Definition of curator

: a person who is in charge of the things in a museum, zoo, etc.


cu·​ra·​tor | \ˈkyu̇r-ˌā-tər, kyu̇-ˈrā-, ˈkyu̇r-ə-\

Kids Definition of curator

: a person in charge of a museum or zoo


cu·​ra·​tor | \ˈkyu̇r-ˌā-tər, kyu̇-ˈrā-tər \

Legal Definition of curator 

in the civil law of Louisiana : a person appointed by a court to care for the property of an absent person or to care for the person or property of someone mentally incapable of doing so — compare committee, conservator, guardian, interdict, tutor

Other Words from curator

curatorship noun

History and Etymology for curator

Latin, guardian, from curare to take care of

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