Manager of Collections

Henry Art Gallery

The Manager of Collections is responsible for Henry collections management, care, and access. Collections management and care are principal responsibilities of the position, including: database management, online content management, copyright requests, overseeing physical care and preservation of the collection, and coordinating of works of art for exhibition. The Manager of Collections supports the museum’s effort to build its collection, and oversees collections access, including visits to the Eleanor Henry Reed Collection Study Center. The MoC reports to the Director of Exhibitions and Collections, and supervises the Assistant Registrar of Collections (full-time), Collections Technician (part-time) and 1-2 University of Washington work study student assistants (part-time) per academic year.

ABOUT THE HENRY: The Henry Art Gallery was founded as Washington State’s first art museum in 1926, on the principle that art stimulates inquiry, fosters knowledge, and builds healthy communities. Located on the campus of the University of Washington (UW), Seattle, the Henry is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the research and presentation of contemporary art. Learn about our mission and vision: henryart.org/about.

SCHEDULE: Tuesday – Friday, 36 hours per week (90% or .9 FTE)

STATUS: Regular University of Washington Professional Staff Employee; Benefits eligible

REPORTS TO: Director of Exhibitions and Collections

BENEFITS: As a UW employee, the Manager of Collections will enjoy generous benefits and work/life programs. For a complete description of the UW benefits for this position, please visit this page.

Responsibilities

Collections Management (35%)

General:

  • Develop and maintain policies, procedures, and best practices for the care, handling, and documentation of the museum’s art collection

  • Oversee the acquisition, deaccession, and registration processes, ensuring compliance with legal and ethical standards

  • Oversee collections-related budgets in coordination with Director of Exhibitions and Collections

Documentation and research:

  • Conduct and supervise collections research and documentation

  • Create, maintain, and distribute documentation photographs of collection works

  • Facilitate and support Henry collections based research requests from scholars, curators, and the public

Acquisitions:

  • Work with the Executive Director, Director of Exhibitions and Collections, and Curatorial team to identify collection priorities and strategically build the collection

  • Facilitate the Board of Trustees Collection Committee Meetings; conduct research on proposed gifts and supervise the preparation of all documents for the meeting

  • Make recommendations to Executive Director and Director of Exhibitions and Collections on potential incoming acquisitions based on internal storage capacity and ongoing stewardship

  • Use and continue to improve the museum’s new system to track task completion for new acquisitions

  • Catalogue incoming acquisitions

Registration and record management:

  • Supervise all registration activities related to the collection, in partnership with the Assistant Registrar of Collections

  • Management of Mimsy, including

  • Work with website team to maintain collection presence online (Mobius)

  • Supervise fulfillment of reproduction requests, including rights and reproduction

  • Work with the Assistant Registrar of Collections to review and facilitate loan requests

Exhibitions Support

  • Working with vendors and internal stakeholders, review and prepare collections objects included in exhibitions

  • Ensure that artworks are prepared and presented in a manner that aligns with curatorial objectives and the museum’s mission

Compliance and Ethics:

  • Stay informed about industry standards and legal requirements related to art collection management

  • Uphold ethical and professional standards in all collection-related activities

Collections Care (35%)

General

  • Conduct and oversee safe art handling of collection objects

  • Manage the handling, packing, and transportation of collections artworks for exhibitions, loans, and other purposes

  • Represent the Henry in the Seattle Heritage Emergency Response Network (SHERN)

Storage

  • Ensure proper housing and storage of collection objects

  • Identify areas of the collection that are not stored in a manner that meets best practice and systematically upgrade their housing

  • Work on the ongoing collections storage upgrade project: assist in planning and logistics, responsible for carrying out of each step of the plan

Conservation

  • Be aware of and maintain preventative conservation best practices, including working with appropriate staff to monitor and maintain appropriate environmental conditions

  • Serve as liaison to, and work closely with, University of Washington conservation and collection care staff

  • Collaborate with conservators to ensure the appropriate care, preservation, and restoration of artworks in the collection

Collections Access (15%)

  • Coordinate public and University access to Henry collections in the Reed Collection Study Center, including academic and community group visits, scholarly visits, and Henry related programming

  • Direct collections staff in locating, pulling, and displaying objects in the Study Center for visits

Team Management (15%)

  • Provide team supervision, including training and leadership, to the Collections team
Requirements
  • A minimum of 3 years of museum collections management and/or care experience or an equivalent combination of education and professional experience

  • Demonstrated knowledge of professional practices in collection management

  • Excellent interpersonal skills and positive attitude that supports department and museum goals. Poised, professional manner in all forms of communication; verbal and written, one-on-one and in groups

  • Commitment to teamwork and service to the organization

  • Ability to support team and management decisions in a positive, professional manner

  • Demonstrated ability to teach, mentor, and oversee work-study students, and interns

  • Self-directed with high ability to take initiative and anticipate actions needed; ability to exercise discretion, maintain confidentiality, and be a team player in an active museum environment

  • High attention to detail and excellent time-management and problem-solving skills

  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with key donors, colleagues, peers, and the public

  • Working knowledge of collection management databases

  • Demonstrated proficiency with MS Office products, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and other software applications

ADDITIONAL DESIRED EXPERIENCE:

  • Masters Degree in Museum Studies, Art History, a related field, or relevant combination of education and experience

  • Demonstrated expertise, including handling and storing, in one or more area of focus of Henry collections (for example: photographs, works on paper, textiles, audio visual works)

  • Experience in collaborating or devising preventative conservation plans as it relates to collections care

  • Working knowledge MIMSY

How to Apply

This is a UW position. To apply, please visit the UW Hires posting and create a candidate profile.

The UW Hires posting can also be found by searching by Req #, using 230462.

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Posted on February 9