As contemporary art becomes increasingly integrated into mainstream culture, so too does its vocabulary—in particular, the word “curate.” The term has been arguably hijacked in recent years: what once referred to a specific occupation in the arts now apparently applies to anything from artisanal coffee shops to online lifestyle blogs.

This phenomenon has helped bring curating and curators to the spotlight. Though it was originally an occupation that kept one behind the scenes, the appointment of curatorial posts is now fodder for news headlines, particularly when it comes to events like documenta or the Venice Biennale. More and more frequently, critics evaluate exhibitions based on how they are developed or formulated—thereby placing the responsibility of a show’s success directly upon the curator’s shoulders, and proving that they are no longer considered merely an overseer of collections or exhibitions. read more