Job posting: Collections Manager / Registrar, Museum of Art, Smith College

Collections Manager / Registrar (link)

Museum of Art, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts

Position Summary:

Responsible for ensuring the overall safety, preservation, maintenance, and documentation for works in SCMA’s collection, on view, in storage, and on loan. Receive, prepare, and catalogue new acquisitions; plan and organize exhibition-related movement of objects, including packing, shipping, and insurance for collection exhibitions as well as for incoming and outgoing loans to/from SCMA. Manage the database of collection contents and photography of the collection. Manage rights & reproduction. Supervise art preparation staff, consultants, and student workers.

Duties and Responsibilities:

Manage all aspects of collections care, following and implementing accepted museum professional standards and practices. Maintain catalogue records and create new records both digital and paper; maintain paper files and archives. Prepare documentation including provenance history for new accessions and research documentation for deaccessioning. Coordinate and manage documentation for deeds of gift, bequests, and donations. Maintain the Museum’s collection management system (MIMSY) and online collection portal (MOBIUS). Responsible for system security, digitization of images to be included in the database, periodic software upgrades and database system migrations, metadata development and development of database search capabilities.  Manage user access and training staff and interns on the use of the system. Serve as SCMA representative on Five Colleges Mimsy Working Group. Work with Smith College Imaging Center on contribution of content to imaging databases (Shared Shelf/ArtStor).

Work with the Five College Insurance Consortium to maintain optimum insurance coverage for the collection and loans.

Responsible for logistics related to loans and traveling exhibitions, including documentation, condition reports, packing, shipping, and receiving. Administer loan forms and agreements and ensure adherence to established policies. Responsible for oversight of collection loans to the President’s office and residence.

Manage and negotiate copyright permissions for use of SCMA artworks in collections and exhibition publications, archives, publicity, marketing, catalogues, websites, e-communication, and related uses.

In collaboration with other collections staff, establish object conservation priorities and plan/implement the safe storage of all works in the collection.  Supervise the conservation and preservation of artwork including managing and coordinating conservation treatments. Oversee monitoring of environmental conditions, including RH & temperature, in all collections spaces and communicate with Facilities Management concerning problems and/or cleaning needs. Maintain Museum disaster plan, facility reports, and collections management policy.

Assist in preparing proposals and grant applications for special collections-oriented projects. Supervise access to artwork for study, exhibition, and research. Interact with SCMA & campus communications staff as well as the national and international scholarly and museum community, responding to loan, research, and publication requests relating to the collections. Interact with potential donors and other museum patrons to facilitate gifts to the Museum’s collections.

Train and supervise art preparation staff and student employees and/or interns performing related work. Coordinate collections management activities with Cunningham Center Manager.

Responsible for ensuring compliance with laws and regulations pertaining to collections and collecting activities.

Qualifications:

Bachelor’s degree in art, art history, or museum studies plus 5-7 years’ experience as Registrar or Collections Manager in an art museum with supervisory experience. Master’s degree or post-baccalaureate certificate in arts administration, museum collection management, or library science preferred.

Skills: Thorough knowledge of museum policies, practices, and procedures. Knowledge of nomenclature, metadata standards, best practices in conservation, object handling, insurance, and museum legal and ethical issues. Extensive knowledge of and experience with collections management and digital asset management systems. Comfortable working on both Windows and Mac platforms. Ability to manage and ensure compliance with loan arrangements of artworks. Knowledge of domestic and foreign loan procedures including courier arrangements and travel. Knowledge of art and art history including identification of specific types of art works. Knowledge of research methodology, principles and procedures. Excellent project management and leadership skills. Strong interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community. Ability to supervise and train employees, to include organizing, prioritizing, and scheduling work assignments. Ability to foster a cooperative work environment. Knowledge of budgeting. Ability to use independent judgment and to manage and impart information to a range of clientele. Commitment to continuous professional self-development. Participate in the cultural heritage collection management community. Requires handling of average-weight objects up to 25 pounds and/or standing and/or walking an average of four (4) hours per day.

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