Manager of Installations and Operations – Colby College Museum of Art

Full-Time, Exempt, Salaried, Administrative Staff Appointment

POSITION VACANCY                                                         January 6, 2020

Founded in 1813, Colby is one of America’s most selective colleges. Serving only undergraduates, Colby’s rigorous academic program is rooted in deep exploration of ideas and close interaction with world-class faculty scholars. Students pursue intellectual passions, choosing among 58 majors or developing their own. Independent and collaborative research, study abroad, and internships offer robust opportunities to prepare students for postgraduate success. Colby is home to a community of 2,000 dedicated and diverse students from around the globe. Its Maine location provides easy access to world-class research institutions and civic engagement experiences.

In a period of fast-paced progress, Colby is building on its strong foundation while remaining committed to excellence, to supporting students and faculty at the highest levels, and to the College’s deep liberal arts traditions. This new chapter includes the creation of innovative academic initiatives and partnerships, strengthening the connections between the liberal arts and the professional world, revitalizing downtown Waterville, and pursuing significant capital projects for performing arts and athletics. Colby invites applicants to apply for the position of:

Working collaboratively with all departments in the Museum, the manager of installations and operations is responsible for the installation of temporary exhibitions, permanent collection galleries, class and curricular installations, and the safe movement of art within the galleries. The manager of installations and operations manages the Museum’s physical envelope and interior spaces, working collaboratively and creatively to develop and implement strategic improvements to spaces and processes within the building. Liaising with Colby’s campus facilities and grounds department, they manage the condition and appearance of the galleries and functioning of the building, arranging and supervising changes, repairs, and maintenance throughout the museum. Essential skills include a strong sense of exhibition design, knowledge of museum lighting, experience in art handling, all aspects of art preparation, and a comprehensive understanding of facilities and building infrastructure.

Founded in 1959, the Colby College Museum of Art is a teaching museum, destination for American art, and a place for engagement with local and global communities. Located on the Colby College campus in Waterville, Maine, the Museum holds more than 10,000 works of art and offers more than 38,000 square feet of exhibition space. Major works by American artists including Albert Bierstadt, Winslow Homer, James McNeill Whistler, Mary Cassatt, and William Merritt Chase form the core of the historical collection, along with significant holdings of American folk art. The modern movement is represented by artists including John Marin, Marsden Hartley, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jacob Lawrence, Joan Mitchell, Isamu Noguchi, and Alma Thomas. The Museum also maintains a significant collection of contemporary American art including works by Alex Katz, Agnes Martin, Sol LeWitt, Maya Lin, Kara Walker, Elizabeth Murray, Martin Puryear, Terry Winters, and Julie Mehretu. Other principal areas of the collection include Greek and Roman antiquities, European prints and drawings, and early Chinese art.

Works in the collection strengthen the Museum’s mission to offer Colby students new perspectives on their classroom studies and expand their understanding of diverse subjects through art. The recent donation of more than 1,500 artworks from Paula and Peter Lunder expands that scope, and the creation of the Lunder Institute for American Art enhances the Museum’s engagement with scholarly and creative production. The Museum welcomes more than 3,000 Maine school children each year and offers a vibrant calendar of family and public programs that are free and open to all. In addition, the Museum serves as a key contributor to the revitalization of downtown Waterville through its membership in Waterville Creates! and its active participation in the programmatic initiatives of Colby College.

Established in 2017, the Lunder Institute for American Art supports innovative research and creative production that expands the boundaries of American art. The Lunder Institute invites visiting artists, scholars, and fellows to engage across disciplines with Colby faculty and students, the College’s network of institutional partners, leading experts, and other creative collaborators. Through incubator grants, fellowships, and symposia addressing regional and global concerns, the Lunder Institute amplifies marginalized voices, challenges convention, and provides a platform for generative dialogue through art and scholarship.

The Colby Museum is deeply committed to strengthening diversity, inclusion, and equity across all strategic and programmatic areas of the Museum, actively building a multiplicity of perspectives and backgrounds represented on our staff and Board of Governors, outreach to diverse audiences, inclusive exhibitions and programs, and a broad-based, expansive collection. We encourage inquiries from candidates who will contribute to the diversity of our college, including its cultural and ethnic diversity.



  • Manage and execute the installation of temporary exhibitions, working in close collaboration with curators, registrars, manager of exhibitions and publications and senior preparator; work includes advance planning and exhibition design, packing and unpacking works of art, shipping and receiving, installation of artworks, gallery preparation and lighting
  • Manage ongoing monitoring and maintenance of installations throughout the duration of an exhibition
  • Work with senior preparator and registrar for collections to prepare art for exhibition, curricular installations, and storage
  • Work with artists as needed to facilitate the fabrication of their installations
  • Manage time-based media installations, including video monitors, screens, iPads, sound and projectors
  • Procure and manage installation equipment, case works, and exhibition furniture in collaboration with senior preparator
  • Work with manager of registration and collections to organize art in museum storage and off-site storage
  • Coordinate on a regular basis with manager of exhibitions and publications to ensure installation and design issues are addressed in a timely manner
  • Collaborate with senior preparator to recruit, mentor and/or train temporary installation staff
  • Plan and prepare budget estimates for installations, facilities, and departmental materials costs
  • Hire and manage external contractors and vendors, securing competitive bids and ensuring budget integrity
  • Manage and maintain Museum loading dock and receiving area

Management of Museum galleries, facilities, and operations:

  • Work closely with deputy director, director, and museum teams to develop and implement operational initiatives, capital projects, and special projects and events that support Museum strategic priorities and program goals
  • Serve as liaison to campus facilities to maintain building systems including HVAC, electrical, and fire suppression
  • Meet regularly with manager of registration and collections to ensure that departmental and operational issues are addressed in a strategic and timely manner
  • Serve on Museum managers team to coordinate operational work and provide regular updates to the deputy director
  • Act as a primary contact for Museum facilities emergencies both during the day and after hours
  • Work closely with collections team on emergency planning and response, safety of art objects, and pest management
  • Build and foster relationships through engagement with local contractors, vendors and others within the campus and surrounding community; manage scheduling and provide access to building for contractors
  • Maintain clean work areas, manage work in accordance with safety rules and OSHA regulations, and maintain certifications for safe operation of equipment
  • Train custodial staff in proper cleaning of galleries to ensure safety of artworks
  • Oversee safe and proper operational planning, preparation, set-up and break down for Museum events
  • Participate in ongoing professional development and training to stay abreast of facilities of best practices in art handling, installation, gallery management and operations


  • Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent in education and experience
  • Minimum 3-5 years of experience and knowledge of museum standards and best practices in the care handling, and installation of fine art objects in a museum setting
  • Manual dexterity in the handling of art objects and ability to carefully follow established procedures
  • Experience with exhibition design and lighting
  • Experience cutting mats, hinging, and framing works on paper; framing canvases; basic carpentry skills and tools
  • Knowledge of standard tools, practices, and methods in painting, rough and finish carpentry, and cabinet work as well as use of materials such as various kinds of lumber, fabrics, plastics, mechanical fasteners, and adhesives
  • Experience in safe operation and maintenance of hand and power tools, hydraulic lifts, and specialized equipment
  • Knowledge and experience with facilities issues including HVAC, pest management, electrical systems, and plumbing
  • Ability to interpret and produce work from architectural/design plans and fabrication shop drawings
  • Excellent organizational and project management skills; attention to detail and ability to manage multiple tasks, apply creative methods to solve problems, and see projects through to completion
  • Excellent interpersonal and verbal and written communication skills that enable collaborative interaction within the museum, college, and community
  • Proven ability to work independently and as a member of a team, exercise discretion, and work collaboratively as a member of a diverse community
  • Experience with Microsoft Office, Google Suite, and museum database systems
  • Valid driver’s license required and must meet the College’s Fleet Safety Policy requirements


The manager of installations and operations reports to the deputy director and works closely with the senior preparator. The manager of installations and operations also works directly with the manager of exhibitions and publications, curators, manager of registration and collections and registrars, and other staff on the installation, deinstallation, and travel of exhibitions. The manager of operations and installations works closely with campus facilities staff and director of museum security to manage and maintain museum spaces.


The work environment characteristics described herein are representative of those encountered while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to perform the essential functions.

General open office and campus environment. Ability to climb ladders and scaffolding, lift up to 75 lbs, and stand for long periods of time. Ability to use eyes and hands to examine and handle delicate objects. Work outside of normal business hours and more than 40 hours as needed during periods of installation/deinstallation. Position involves sitting, although frequent movement is necessary. Computer usage involving repetitive hand/wrist motion is also necessary.


Interested candidates should apply electronically by clicking the “Apply Now” button on the Colby College website. Please submit a letter of interest including salary requirements, resume, and the contact information of three professional references. Materials should be addressed to:

Manager of Installations and Operations at Colby College Museum of Art – Search Committee
Office of Human Resources
Colby College
5500 Mayflower Hill
Waterville, ME  04901-8855

A review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Colby is a private, coeducational liberal arts college that admits students and makes employment decisions on the basis of the individual’s qualifications to contribute to Colby’s educational objectives and institutional needs. Colby College does not discriminate in its educational programs or employment on the basis of race, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, national origin, age, marital status, genetic information, or military or veteran’s status.  Colby is an equal opportunity employer and operates in accordance with federal and state laws regarding non-discrimination. Colby complies with Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in an institution’s education programs and activities.  Questions regarding Title IX may be referred to Colby’s Title IX coordinator or to the federal Office of Civil Rights.  We encourage inquiries from candidates who will contribute to the cultural and ethnic diversity of our college.

For more information about the College, please visit our website:

Categories: Job Postings