When it launched on August 29, 2008, as a web publication of International Arts Movement (IAM), The Curator sought to announce signs of a “world that ought to be” as found in our midst and to inspire its readers to engage deeply with culture that enriches life and broadens experience. In keeping with our belief that artistic excellence paves the way for lasting, enduring humanity, The Curator has encouraged, promoted, and uncovered artifacts of culture—those things humans create—that inspire and embody truth, goodness and beauty.
Five years and three editors-in-chief later, The Curator still holds to that philosophy to a large extent, celebrating the best of new art, music, film and books, as well as taking time to observe daily beauty through poetry and creative nonfiction. But its tone and approach have become sometimes feistier, more willing to criticize “the world that is but ought not be,” which, in any case, seems to be a necessary corollary.
Since its inception, The Curator has published over 1000 original pieces, published a daily blog entry, published the work of 245 writers and averages a readership of 600 a day (20,000 a month). On our busiest day, the site had approximately 5,100 page views.
Our writers come from every region of the country, and some live overseas. They are teachers, poets, doctors, parents, plumbers, designers, students, baristas, store clerks, bouncers, pastors, farmers and philosophers. In the last few months we’ve covered topics as diverse as Picasso, neuroscience, Anna Karenina, Koosh™ balls, baseball, Charles Bukowski, gun violence in contemporary film, Willie Nelson and urban planning.
Having moved away from IAM’s organizational infrastructure, we as a community of volunteer editors and writers, are interested in beginning dialogue with other like-minded universities and organizations about diversifying our publishing base, seeking financial support and accountability from a variety of new sources as publishers.
You’ll notice that as of March 2014 we redesigned the site. This new format reflects one of our greatest aims this season, which is to be more curatorial, truly an amalgamation of artifacts, quotes, image galleries, long form essays, videos, and other media as an expression of the human heart. We, in short, want to be a discourse concourse. Conversation is the purpose of this new layout.
While the editorial staff will do most of this new curating, occasionally we’ll ask our new publishers (and we’re in the process of recruiting) to act as guest curators, advisers, directors of our content environment. At other times the site will be curated around a central theme, with plenty of explanatory material and plenty of notice so that our readers can submit toward that purpose. The opinions presented in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of The Curator, but represent a continuing commitment to wrestling with the culture that is and looking toward what might yet be.
For now, though, we’re all getting used to the new looks of things — and moving from there.
Is The Curator an arts magazine? Is it a religious magazine?
In a word, no.
Though we believe that our goals are those that people of faith, as well as people in the fine arts, should and do embrace, the common factor in our audience is not a specific vocation or religious persuasion, but the desire to help create “the world that ought to be”. The Curator provides a way for people who are interested in human dignity and responsible creativity to discover people and products that are contributing positively in our culture, or that raise important questions about the nature of humanity. We claim no singular affinity toward “highbrow” art or “pop” culture.
Who are your contributors?
Our writers are people interested in many aspects of culture—fine art, food, video games, opera, literature, film, and a whole lot more. They are spread out across the country (and hopefully someday across the world). We hope to eventually be able to pay them what they’re worth!
How can I write for The Curator?
The Curator publishes three essays per week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday; each in the range of 800-1200 words) that evaluate or reflect upon contemporary culture. Our goal is to consider, as cultural makers and participants, how the world is now and what it might mean to create the “world as it ought to be.”
We are always looking for new voices and perspectives, so, no matter your political or religious alignment, if you have an idea we’d love to hear from you.
How to Submit
Read The Curator. If you want to write for us, get to know our style and content.
Send us a pitch (200-250 words) of the yet-to-be-written article. Tell us where the piece is heading, and make your opinion known. If this is your first submission to The Curator, please also provide at least two writing samples.
If your pitch is accepted, be your own proofreader. The first paragraph should get right to the point, and we like subsequent paragraphs to be shortish and organized by snappy topic sentences. If you use names, dates and places in your piece, double-check all facts and spelling. Use one space between sentences. Please note that we are tired of the words literally, obviously, clearly, unique, seems.
Send your proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We prefer submissions as Word attachments. The Curator pays (a very small sum) upon publication. All articles will be edited for length, grammar, content and style.
The Curator retains first publication rights for six months from publication date; after that, reprints may be permitted with written permission. Email email@example.com for more information and reprint requests.
Have something to say about an article? Want to respond to an idea? Have something to add? We’re interested in publishing well-formulated responses that fit with the mission of The Curator. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’re interested in poems that make us want to read them more than once, and we try to publish a new poem every Thursday morning. If you have a poem or poems for us to consider (no more than three), send them to email@example.com.
I’d like to subscribe to The Curator.
At present, we only publish online. You can receive updates by subscribing to our RSS feed. You can become a fan of The Curator on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
How can I advertise on your site?
The Curator is looking for partners! Our space is now available to art service organizations, universities, residency programs, non-profits, etc. as carefully-curated bulletin/promotional board. Rates can be found here. Questions, comments, critiques? Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re not interested in partnering with us in this manner but you have other collaborative ideas, we welcome your input!
I love what you’re doing and I’d like to get involved.
We’d love that, too. Send an email to email@example.com and we’ll chat.