(Full-time, permanent, non-union position)
The Director, Collections is responsible for overseeing the Brooklyn Museum's rich and varied collections—spanning 5,000 years of human creativity. S/he reports to the Deputy Director and Chief Curator (DDCC) and supports and partners with the DDCC on the stewardship of the collection while charting the strategies for its preservation, presentation, publication, and growth. The Director, Collections will set standards for collection management that will be exemplary in the field, making the Brooklyn Museum one of the most respected cultural institutions in the world. S/he will rethink and rationalize the disposition of the collection and set it on a path into the twenty-first century that recognizes and brings to the fore the transcultural history of art around the globe.
The Director, Collections partners with the DDCC to provide guidance to the Board of Trustees on issues related to collection management; best practices and policies for institutional collecting; industry standards relevant to museums; issues of scholarship across collections areas; and acquisitions, deaccessions, and loan recommendations.
This position is an active champion and representative of our mission as it pertains to the collection, actively seeks out new partners and opportunities for the Museum, and is thoroughly familiar with the collections, exhibitions, and programming initiatives of peer institutions.
The Director, Collections serves as an advisor to the curators of the Museum’s collections and a liaison to other departments within the Museum. S/he administers such programs as collection policy and planning, and advises on collection exhibition programs, working closely with Exhibitions Management, Conservation, and the Registrar. This position oversees the outgoing loan program and acquisition intake, including the preparation of acquisition review and paperwork, and the presentation of acquisitions to the Collections Committee and the Board.
The Director, Collections is a leader in his/her field, with expertise in art history, and is very passionate about a cross-section of art and artistic mediums. S/he also has a broad knowledge of the larger cultural sphere; has extensive experience working with artists, estates, galleries, and collectors; writes for prestigious publications, lectures, and travels to important galleries and exhibitions; and is a well-regarded art historian and active member of the art world.
- A background in art history, with established scholarship and expertise across artistic fields and collections
- Extensive professional curatorial experience at a major museum, with excellent management, research, writing, and communication skills
- Respected and well-known in his/her field of specialty
- Thoroughly familiar with best practices for museum administration, strategic planning, collections management, and exhibitions planning
Responsibilities: The role and responsibilities of the Director, Collections include:
- Working with the DDCC to ensure curatorial excellence with regard to the collection and its presentation
- Managing the following departments: Conservation, Registrar, and Libraries and Archives
- Investing the time and resources in scholarship to ensure that the Museum remains an educational and cultural leader
- Remaining familiar with the highest standards of museum best practices, including AAMD and AAM guidelines for museums and collections, and championing those practices with respect to collections management and policies, exhibition planning, acquisitions, deaccessions, loans, and gallery design and installation
- Working with the DDCC and the curatorial staff to develop and present thoughtful collection exhibitions/rotations, with consideration for how such exhibitions support the Museum’s mission and achieve a specific purpose/intent
- Constantly considering the presentation of the collection in the Museum’s galleries and whether objects should be sent on loan for greater visibility
- Providing oversight for the organization of traveling collection exhibitions, and, with the Vice Director of Exhibitions and Collections Management, evaluating the balance between resources and revenue
- Fostering a transparent and collaborative culture, including open communications with staff
- Initiating and leading regular staff meetings with respect to collections management
- Overseeing the implementation of an ongoing and rigorous deaccession program
- Preparing thoughtfully for all Board and Committee meetings to excite Trustees about collections initiatives
- Maintaining familiarity with the Museum’s financial statements, overall budget, and funding sources/needs for acquisitions and collections support (including staying abreast of restricted funds, promised gifts, and pending bequests)
- Maintaining familiarity with the Museum’s collection database
Reports to: Deputy Director and Chief Curator
Starting date: Immediate
Schedule: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with some weekend and evening hours
To apply: Please send a cover letter and résumé to firstname.lastname@example.org.