Traditionally, a Curator is a Keeper of cultural heritage institutions, such as gallery, museum or archive. He is a content specialist, responsible for an institution's collections. The object of a traditional curator's concern necessarily involves tangible objects of some sort, whether it is inter alia artwork, collectibles, historic items or scientific collections. More recently, new kinds of curators are emerging such as curators of digital data objects and procurators.
In smaller organizations, a curator may have sole responsibility for the acquisition and care of objects. The curator will make decisions regarding what objects to collect, oversee their care and documentation, conduct research based on the collection, provide proper packaging of art for transport and share that research with the public. In larger institutions, the curator's primary function is as a subject specialist, with the expectation that he or she will conduct original research on objects and guide the organization in its collecting.
A master'sor a Ph. D. degree in subjects such as the history of art, anthropology, archaeology or the classics is recommended. Other courses one can consider include public history, museum studies, arts management or curatorial practice.