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Foundation Manager

Closing date
Job ID
Thursday 29 April 2021
Alserkal Avenue, Dubai

This role is central to the management and smooth functioning of the Alserkal Arts Foundation (AAF) and all its activities. The Foundation Manager is a key role within the Foundation, dedicated to driving the Alserkal family’s vision, leading to long-term legacy-building, rigorous programming, a research grants scheme, colloquia, a dynamic art commissions programme that enhances the public realm, and a successful residency programme. All of which establish AAF as a centre for multi-disciplinary research and artistic experimentation in the region and beyond.

Working closely alongside the Director, the Foundation Manager is expected to be a major contributor to the development and programme management of the Foundation.

Key Responsibilities:

Residency Programme

AAF hosts three residency cycles per year, each with up to four residents. This role has key responsibility for being the host and manager for the residents, working closely with them on a day-to-day basis.

  • Managing the calls and selection process for the residencies, whether via nomination or open call, making sure we reach the necessary audiences
  • Liaising with the Selection Committee and applicants during application and selection cycles
  • Working closely with Foundation Director and residents to devise, produce and execute public programming
  • Engaging and working closely with the residents and their practices to ensure that they have a generative experience and feel supported
  • Researching and arranging appropriate studio visits for each resident with local practitioners
  • Making sure that the studios and villa are fit for purpose and well maintained
  • Managing budgets and weekly and monthly reports as necessary, ensuring that the funds for research and programming are available and accounted for
  • Organising travel and logistics as needed, including research and ideation for local excursions and fieldwork
  • Maintain regular communications with residents, alumni, selection committee members and research award grantees, making sure that we stay connected with our key audiences and partners
  • Content management and liaison on marketing and communications as required by the Director and the Programme Executive

Exhibitions and Commissions

The Foundation team develops and manages exhibitions at Concrete as well as annual artist commissions across the Avenue or offsite. Exhibitions are generally held in March and November of each year and the commissions / projects take place throughout the year in different forms.

  • Research and planning, identifying artists and projects of interest as part of the curatorial team, playing an important role in developing the Foundation’s exhibitions strategy
  • Forecasting and management of budgets, payments and weekly / monthly reports as required for all exhibitions and commissions that the Foundation is engaged in
  • Leading on planning and delivery of installation and deinstallation, working closely with freelancers, external contractors and personnel as needed
  • Procuring and liaising with shipping companies and art handlers to arrange for the shipping and logistics for all exhibitions, including customs paperwork
  • Liaison and coordination of loan contract and logistics with lenders, partners, external curators or artists, condition reporting and ensuring that display meets necessary conservation standards, bringing in specialists if needed
  • Supervision and management of staff and facilities during exhibitions (recruiting and training volunteers, guides/docents, etc.)
  • Organise tours and outreach as necessary, making sure that protocol is followed when required

Research Grants

The research grants programme provides research funding to interdisciplinary scholars, artists, writers and creative practitioners

  • Work in partnership with Director to develop, plan and implement the grants programme.
  • Assisting with logistics of the grants programme, including travel and hospitality
  • Forecasting and managing budgets and payments in relation to the grants
  • Creating and managing a reporting structure for grant activities
  • Maintaining regular contact with grant awardees to ensure that their projects remain on track
  • Working with Foundation Director to ensure that the grantees remain engaged with the Foundation and that their research is shared with our audiences as appropriate
  • Develop relevant programming with the grant awardees – this could include texts, talks, online programmes or more ambitious seminars and symposia

Events and educational programming

A combination of shorter accessible events and workshops and ambitious and research-led colloquia, to bring engaged and diverse audiences to the foundation around the year.

  • Research, ideate and execute events alongside the Foundation team and external partners
  • Management of speakers, contracts and any travel or accessibility requirements
  • Planning, briefing and regular liaison with Marketing, Operations, Finance and Facilities teams to ensure the smooth delivery of all programmes
  • Hosting and management on the day of the event, making sure that all housekeeping requirements, refreshments, catering are well executed
  • Offline and online programming for the foundation, making sure that all events are streamed or recorded as appropriate
  • Making sure that communications for the event – posters, emails, social media – are on brand and reach target audiences

Required skills + experience

  • 3-5 years of work experience, particularly non-profit or in an arts or cultural setting
  • Degree in Arts, Humanities or Social Sciences with a strong interest in arts and cultural production
  • Excellent organisational and administrative skills
  • Excellent budget-keeping and reporting skills
  • Excellent writing and communication skills
  • Work experience in the GCC or wider region desirable
  • English necessary, Arabic/Hindi/Urdu desirable

Position type and expected hours of work

This is a full-time position. Days and hours of work are Sunday through Thursday, from 10am to 6pm. Saturdays and overtime might be required during intense periods and/or during special projects and events.

This job description summarises the main key responsibilities of your role but there may be other reasonable requests made and other responsibilities included from time to time.

Application process

To apply, please send a CV and cover letter to with "Foundation Manager" in the subject line.