ACASA Award for Curatorial Excellence

The Award for Curatorial Excellence recognize the important contributions to the dissemination and understanding of African and African Diaspora Arts made through exhibitions.  Exhibitions related to permanent collections, loan shows, commissioned works or community interventions organized by museums, galleries, cultural centers, and exhibition spaces of all sorts are eligible. Three awards for curatorial excellence will be given.

Exhibition eligibility:  September 1, 2016 through August 30, 2019. Nominees must be ACASA members in good standing. Join ACASA

Criteria for consideration for this award include exhibitions that:

  • Generate new scholarship across the humanities
  • Open new perspectives on the field
  • Collaborate with and/or contribute to local or stakeholder communities
  • Demonstrate innovative approaches to exhibition design and presentation
  • Demonstrate innovative uses of technology

Application materials to submit:

  • Cover page indicating title of exhibition, dates, venue(s), curator(s) names
  • Synopsis of exhibition (one-page)
  • Sample publication where applicable. This can include PDFs of take-away brochures, exhibition preview article or other means of documentation and distribution of project. If no publication was possible, please submit a bibliography of 5 key sources germane to the show’s thesis or points of departure.
  • Sample didactics (labels or other interpretive materials, such as on-line description, that demonstrate the exhibition’s intellectual content and curatorial vision. Not to exceed 3-pages)
  • Visual documentation: up to 5 still digital images, at least one of which must show installation, context or performance space; up to 2 videos or links, not to exceed 3 minutes in length to document performance or time-based projects.
  • Link to or documentation of innovative uses of technology or interactive engagement
  • Description of institution, organization or entity originating the exhibition (for example museum, independent art space, pop-up…, including mission, history, collection (if applicable), size, staff, budget, audience and other information pertinent to understanding the context in which the exhibition emerged.
  • Documentation of community response. Up to three (3) examples that demonstrate various perspectives. These might include emails, sample entries from audience response books, or social media postings and not just critical or press reviews.

Submissions should be received by October 30, 2019 at

2017  Awards for Curatorial Excellence

Karen E. Milbourne, Earth Matters, National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C., April 22, 2013 – March 2014

Jean Borgatti, Global Africa, Fitchburg Art Museum, November 2014 – August 2017

Antawan I. Byrd and Yves Chatap, [Re]Generations, Musée du District de Bamako, October 31 – December 31, 2015