The Williams College Museum of Art seeks a Director of Exhibitions and Collection Management (DECM). Reporting to the Director of the museum, this senior management position directs the scheduling and production of all museum exhibitions; the maintenance and storage of museum collections (15,000 objects in a broad range of media) in on- and off-site locations; and the packing, movement, and documentation of artwork in support of the museum’s diverse programming. The DECM oversees the workflow of the museum’s preparators, registrars, an exhibition manager, and outside vendors and contracted personnel. The DECM works closely with fellow members of the museum’s leadership team to oversee planning and implementation of museum/storage renovation and expansion, and actively participates in long-range and strategic planning.
The DECM is part of a remarkable museum and college environment. The Williams College Museum of Art makes dynamic art experiences to inspire new thinking about art, museums, and the world—and it does so from within the nation’s top-ranked liberal arts college. A vibrant center for the arts at Williams, the Museum embodies the liberal arts’ ability to catalyze both creative and critical thinking. It is a vital hub for deep student learning and participation; for taking risks and testing creative, future forms of scholarship and teaching; and for boldly affirming the relevance of the history of art and the arts broadly. Visit our website: http://wcma.williams.edu.
Williams College is committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty and staff. The DECM serves as an essential leader developing a genuinely inclusive museum for the college and as a model for the field. Our expectation is that the successful candidate will excel at working in a community that is broadly diverse with regard to race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender, nationality, sexual orientation and religion. Applicants should highlight relevant experience with building, working with, and supporting a broadly diverse employee community.
Key responsibilities of the DECM:
- Oversees the scheduling and production of all museum exhibitions, rotations, and installations. This includes supervising museum preparators and outside vendors in a broad range of work—artwork preparation, installation/deinstallation, construction and carpentry, painting, lighting, design assistance, making and installing wall labels and texts, etc. Oversees relationship with College Facilities department as pertains to exhibition-related carpentry, painting, etc.
- Oversees the documentation of artwork by registrars, and its safe and organized storage, packing, and movement locally and long distance. and. As teaching from the collection is central to WCMA’s mission, the DECM must meet acute demand for access to study objects—in galleries, study rooms, and classrooms, and by students, educators, curators, other museum staff, and the public.
- In coordination with other museum departments, the DECM will oversee a major collection move to off-site storage, beginning in spring 2019. Oversees relationship with College Facilities department as pertains to off-site facility. Operates lifts and other machinery and trains and supervises others in using this equipment.
- Maintains an information hub, critical for the work of various museum staff, regarding exhibition production, artwork movement and storage, and related scheduling.
- In all of the foregoing: (i) develops, implements, and adheres to plans, budgets, and schedules; (ii) demonstrates the highest level of professional practice, staying abreast of new developments, technologies, methods, and products in the field; and (iii) is willing and able to work “hands on” when the occasion requires.
- On an ongoing basis, supports other museum departments and units, especially Engagement, Curatorial, and Security, in the design, planning, scheduling and other activities they routinely undertake to ensure successful programming. Also consults with them to stay abreast of long-range exhibition planning and collection policy issues.
- Participates actively in the planning, budgeting, and implementation of construction, renovation and other capital projects.
- Participates actively in strategic planning, including by identifying what data would be meaningful and gathering it from users of the DECM’s department.
- Oversees a sizable team, in a manner that is supportive yet maintains accountability.
- Develops and oversees systems to enhance efficiency/stewardship of resources and coordination among the department’s varied staff.
- Gains credibility with key users, such that the DECM is recognized and respected as a trusted ally in achieving programming aspirations and as a voice of practical limitations.
- Bachelor’s Degree in a related field and 10+ years of professional experience; or an equivalent combination of education and related experience.
- Substantial art museum collection and exhibition experience, including in the movement and storage of large and varied collections and as a preparator of a range of exhibitions. A working knowledge of the duties of registrars, gained through collaboration with them.
- Demonstrated success in the management of projects that have challenging logistics and tight deadlines and budgets.
- Supervisory and leadership experience. A track record of hiring well, managing well, and retaining members of a high-performing team that worked productively and cooperatively with the institution’s other teams and individuals.
- Ability to use the full range of computer applications and other technology relevant to the position.
- Ability to operate lifts and other machinery, and to train others to do so.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills.
For optimal consideration, please submit resume materials by March 15, 2019; review of resumes will continue until position is filled.
Employment at Williams is contingent on the verification of background information submitted by the applicant, including the completion of a criminal record check, and education when applicable.
Beyond meeting fully its legal obligations for non-discrimination, Williams College is committed to building a diverse and inclusive community where members from all backgrounds can live, learn, and thrive.
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