Internship at the National Portrait Gallery

 18thCentury Collections Curatorial Department

Sir Joshua Reynolds, ‘Sir Joseph Banks’, oil on canvas, 1771-1773

The National Portrait Gallery is seeking to appoint an intern for six months with a proven interest in portraiture to gain experience in general curatorial work and research across a number of projects.  The main focus of the internship will be on the 18th-Century Collections but an interest in the portraiture of other periods is desirable.  Tasks may include answering public enquiries, scoping out ideas for the annual redisplay of Regency miniatures, research towards a forthcoming display on World War Two and the RAF at Beningbrough Hall, Yorkshire and research support towards an academic study of portrait print collecting and extra-illustration in eighteenth-century Britain. As a large part of the internship will involve research in libraries and archives in London, it would be an advantage to have completed an MA or be engaged in a programme of PhD study.

The intern will be supervised by the 18th Century Curator and Assistant Curator, 18th Century.


1 day (8 hours) per week for six months to be agreed with the curator.

Travel Expenses

Travel costs of up to ten pounds (£10) per week can be claimed

Ideally we would like candidates to be available for a 6-month period.

Person Specification

Qualifications and Experience

  • Good general knowledge of British art history and/or history
  • A proven interest in the eighteenth century and a reasonable understanding of portraiture as a genre
  • The internship would ideally suit those candidates who have completed an Art History or History MA or are engaged in a programme of PhD study who have an interest in pursuing museum work

Skills and Attributes

  • Ideal candidates will need to have a flexible approach and be prepared to contribute to a number of different projects
  • Candidates will also need to be able to demonstrate a careful approach and attention to detail
  • Excellent written English is an essential requirement

Please send your CV and a covering letter either by e-mailing:  or by writing to: Emily Burns, Curatorial Office, National Portrait Gallery, 2 St Martin’s Place, London WC2H 0HE. 

Closing date for returned applications: 9.00am Monday, 13 August 2012.

Interviews will take place in the week beginning 20 August 2012.




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