Curator of Indigenous Collections, Bata Shoe Museum

In the spirit of respect and friendship, the Bata Shoe Museum recognizes that the land on which we are situated has been the ancestral home of many nations, including the Wendat, the Anishnaabeg, the Haudenosaunee, and the Mississaugas of the Credit, since time immemorial. Today, this area remains home to many diverse Indigenous communities, including First Nations, Inuit, and Metis peoples. As a staff, we at the Bata Shoe Museum are grateful to have the opportunity to meet, work, and learn together on this land.

Located in Toronto, Canada, the Bata Shoe Museum regularly displays over a thousand shoes and related artifacts, chosen from a collection of nearly 15,000 objects, in architect Raymond Moriyama’s iconic, award-winning building. The mission of the Bata Shoe Museum is to communicate the central role of footwear in shaping the social and cultural life of humanity. Through gathering, conserving, researching, interpreting, and exhibiting material evidence of the history of footwear and shoemaking, the museum illustrates the changing habits, lifestyles, culture, and customs of the world’s inhabitants. The Bata Shoe Museum’s international collection of nearly 15,000 artifacts spans 4,500 years of history.

It is within this context that they invite nominations and applications for the role of Curator of Indigenous Collections, a position essential to the organization’s transformative impact and long-term vision.

The position of Curator of Indigenous Collections is a newly-created full-time, permanent role in the Curatorial Department of the Bata Shoe Museum. The successful candidate will help shape the museum’s future through creating thoughtful new ways of engaging with the collection, researching and writing curating innovative and thought-provoking new exhibitions, working collaboratively with colleagues, and helping to create and promote inclusive relationships with Indigenous communities. The successful candidate will have a focus on researching the history of Indigenous footwear from what is now known as North America, and curate visitor-centered exhibitions on this topic. Furthermore, they will work with the curatorial and conservation team to select artifacts appropriate for display as well as determine the best methods for care, display and interpretation of Indigenous belongings.


Among the qualifications being sought in candidates, the incoming leader must have a deep and abiding commitment to advancing reconciliation, equity, diversity, and inclusion in all its forms and must believe, intrinsically, in the importance of leading with curiosity and welcoming ideas that can later be synthesized and turned into possibility. While all candidates are encouraged to apply and, in so doing, share how they see themselves adding value to the Bata Shoe Museum environment, the following credentials and/or experiences are seen as possible markers of the candidates most likely to realize success in the role: A) a number of years of experience conducting research on topics related to Indigenous arts and culture, or direct knowledge and experience of Indigenous creative and cultural spaces; B) thought leadership experience (whether shared in dialogue or written form) on the topic of Indigenous arts and culture; C) experience working with Indigenous Elders, Knowledge Keepers or Cultural Advisors; and D) a degree, certificate or equivalent experience in history, art history, anthropology or related field and/or Traditional Knowledge about Indigenous fashion or history.


The salary for this position is $70,000 to $80,000, depending on experience, plus employer-paid benefits, vacation, and personal days.

How to Apply

Bata Shoe Museum is partnering with BIPOC Executive Search to ensure an applicant list that is diverse and is as intersectional as possible. All interested applicants can send their résumé to Melissa Sumnauth by e-mailing

Application Deadline: July 31, 2024

The Bata Shoe Museum condemns racism, injustice and violence. We have taken time to reflect on how we can effectively and meaningfully make change. We acknowledge that as a museum, we have a responsibility to support diversity, inclusion and accessibility through the work done within our own institution and outside our doors and are committed to this. We acknowledge that we must listen more, learn more, and engage in difficult but necessary conversations. We acknowledge that we have a responsibility to use our platform to amplify minoritized voices. We are committed to prioritizing the education of our board and staff on the issues of diversity and inclusivity. We are committed to changing our museum to be more inclusive to those who have felt marginalized and excluded from being part of a museum community. We are committed to having diverse voices be heard in our exhibitions and our programming. We are committed to providing space for community engagement. We are committed to supporting minoritized business owners. We are committed to making a difference and are actively working on a plan of action. Being silent is being complicit.

In accordance with the AODA Act, for applicants living with a disability accommodation will be provided throughout the search process. Should accommodations be required, please make Melissa Sumnauth aware by using the above address.

We thank everyone for their expression of interest—and are truly appreciative of the time individuals put into applying—but with the limitations of time only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Bata Shoe Museum
327 Bloor St W
Toronto, ON M5S 1W7