Chief Preparator

Sarasota Art Museum

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The Sarasota Art Museum, a contemporary kunsthalle, exhibiting innovative and compelling visual art of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, is seeking a Chief Preparator.

Reporting directly to the Director of Exhibitions, the Chief Preparator will be a vital member of the small but dynamic exhibitions team, working closely with curatorial as well as operations and facilities staff. The Chief Preparator will supervise temporary preparators and independent contractors in exhibition-related work.

The Chief Preparator is responsible for all aspects of professional museum art handling related to the fabrication and installation/deinstallation of galleries, receiving and shipping artwork, packing and storage of art objects, and is a key team member for exhibition/project planning and implementation. This role requires precise attention to detail, strong communication and analytical skills, as well as the abilities to manage multiple projects simultaneously and to work collaboratively and diplomatically.

The successful incumbent must be able to perform each essential duty to a degree of high quality and expertise. The Chief Preparator will have the ability to collaborate with curatorial staff using a high level of organization, communication and time management skills to ensure that all American Alliance of Museums (AAM) and museum industry standards are met.

In consultation with other team members, the Chief Preparator will assist in determining detailed production schedules, estimating time and cost involved with each project. The Chief Preparator will work closely with Manager of Facilities and the Office of Public Safety to ensure exhibition design and fabrication follows proper building codes, meets engineering and public safety standards, and is ADA compliant.

On occasion, the incumbent may be required to work into evenings or on weekends and holidays, to fulfill the obligations of meeting exhibition project deadlines.

Open until filled. Apply on-line

Sarasota Art Museum/Ringling College of Art and Design is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required to successfully perform the duties of the job:

  • Ability to interpret and provide instructions in written, oral, diagram and/or schedule form.

  • Maintain project and exhibition workflow according to project schedules, with a variety of tasks and deadlines.

  • Ability to solve problems and prioritize needs in a variety of situations when immediate decisions may be necessary.

  • Highly collaborative and exceptional interpersonal skills.

  • Ability to provide exhibition project deliverables on time, within budget, and with the highest possible quality.

  • Knowledge of environmental and safety rules, regulations, and policies.

  • Ability to conduct job site inspections to ensure compliance.

  • Ability to follow written and verbal directions and communicate those instructions to others.

  • Ability to work extended hours as necessary.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • High School diploma or equivalent

  • Three to five years of experience working in an art museum handling and installing artwork, implementing exhibitions, and building exhibition furniture/walls.

  • Experience working on complex projects and leading an installation crew.

  • Knowledge of art handling techniques, practices and principles, and associated materials.

  • Experience with woodshop tools and fabrication techniques, as well as knowledge of building construction and general mechanical maintenance.

  • Experience in the use of powered lifts and ladders in galleries as well as skill in handling trucks, forklifts, lifts and other forms of moving equipment.

  • Familiarity with museum industry standards and best practices as outlined by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM).

  • Possession of a valid Florida driver’s license or ability to obtain one.

Preferred Qualificatons:

  • Proficiency in MS Office and SketchUp.

  • Exhibition design experience.

How to Apply

Open until filled. Apply on-line

Ringling College of Art and Design is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Posted on June 24