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The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition seeks an Emerging Curator for Momentum 2022. Momentum is an interactive, multidisciplinary art event highlighting artists age 30 and younger in a juried exhibition.

The Emerging Curator will work in mentorship with the Guest Curator to select Spotlight projects, dialogue with artists as they create their artwork, write a curatorial statement, and assist with jurying the survey exhibition. Curators will work out appropriate meetings and communication with the artists to discuss their concepts and see progress. Curators are asked to write about the artists' work and speak about the work during the exhibition. The Emerging Curator will receive a $500 honorarium.


Helen Opper is an independent fine art curator and appraiser based in Oklahoma. She received her B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley, and earned her M.A. from New York University’s Program in Museum Studies. After working with art in San Francisco and New York for several years, Helen returned to her hometown of Oklahoma City in 2015 in order to shift her focus to her immediate community. Through the diversity of her studies and work, she has become keenly aware of how the art world reflects the challenges of contemporary society, and her goals as a curator include working with artists traditionally underrepresented in the fine art world and expanding equal access to avenues to artistic success through exhibitions, collaborations, and special project opportunities. Helen knows that art should respond to the complexities of contemporary culture, politics, and identity, and she embraces work that questions the status quo and challenges the current world order. As a curator, she attempts to level the playing field by working with artists of all backgrounds and at all stages of their careers. As a fine art appraiser, her goal is to educate clients about their artwork, to close the knowledge gap surrounding the business of fine art, and to provide general education about the role and importance of professional appraisals for artist and client advocacy. In addition to her curatorial, appraisal, and consulting work for private clients, Helen recently curated ArtNow 2021 at Oklahoma Contemporary, manages Oklahoma City gallery The Art Hall, and is an adjunct professor in the Visual Art Program at Oklahoma City Community College.


  • Applicant curators must be Oklahoma residents at the time of application and through the installation of the exhibition. Previous curatorial experience is not required. Applicants may be of any age. Past Momentum Emerging Curators are not eligible but previous applicants are encouraged to resubmit. The Guest Curator will select the Emerging Curator based on promise as an active curator, passion for emerging artists, and compatibility with the Guest Curator.
  • Applicant curators must be OVAC members to apply. Membership benefits include access to OVAC's annual Resource Guide, inclusion in OVAC's online Artist Gallery, discount for Artist Survival Kit (ASK) workshops, entry fees waived for OVAC opportunities, and more. Student memberships are $25 per year and individual memberships are $45 per year. Join OVAC today. 
  • The Emerging Curator should be available during the preparation for and installation of the exhibition.



Applications must include a letter that explains your interest in curatorial work and this project with a copy of your resume. Letters should outline your background with art and/or any curatorial projects. Discuss how you think this project will affect your future activities.


Nov. 4 – Emerging Curator applications due

Nov. 19 – Emerging Curator announced

Nov. 18 – Spotlight Proposals due

Dec. 10 – Spotlight Artists announced

Dec. 14 – Spotlight orientation at 5:30-6:30pm via Zoom (Curator, Emerging Curator, Spotlight Artists, and OVAC staff present)

Jan. 8 – Spotlight Artist studio visits (option for in-person or Zoom, 1 hour each)

Jan. 13 – General Survey entries due

Feb. 4 – General Survey announced

Feb. 9-10 — Tent. possible dates for VIP Spotlight Preview at 21c Museum Hotel in OKC

March 25-27 – Momentum in OKC at TBD location

Late or incomplete entries will not be accepted.


Questions are encouraged! Please contact programs@ovac-ok.org.

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.