THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART
Assistant / Associate Conservator, Objects Conservation
About The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art collects, studies, conserves, and presents significant works of art across all times and cultures in order to connect people to creativity, knowledge, and ideas.
The Met presents over 5,000 years of art from around the world for everyone to experience and enjoy. The Museum lives in three iconic sites in New York City—The Met Fifth Avenue, The Met Breuer, and The Met Cloisters. Since it was founded in 1870, The Met has always aspired to be more than a treasury of rare and beautiful objects. Every day, art comes alive in the Museum's galleries and through its exhibitions and events, revealing both new ideas and unexpected connections across time and across cultures.
About the Department
The Department of Objects Conservation is responsible for the conservation and mounting/installation of three-dimensional art at the Museum’s three venues. The scope of the Objects Conservation’s mission-critical responsibilities extends to every curatorial department and all of the Museum’s collections-based activities, including acquisitions, deaccessioning, exhibitions, capital projects, scholarly research, etc. The substantial scope of work includes approximately 7,000 completed object requests annually and the variation in scale ranges from single beads to historic interiors and architectural stone elements embedded in the Museum’s buildings.
GENERAL STATEMENT OF RESPONSIBILITIES & DUTIES:
The Assistant/Associate Conservator will be responsible for conservation of the collection of the
Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas (AAOA), consisting of more than 12,000 archaeological and historic works for art in a range of organic and inorganic media and representing diverse cultural traditions from 3000 B.C.E. to the present, as well as objects of the American Wing collection that fall under the above description. The Assistant/Associate Conservator will also be the primary Objects Conservation liaison, in partnership with the embedded AAOA conservator, for planning and executing the renovation of the AAOA galleries, projected to begin in 2020.
The architectural firm wHY, in collaboration with AAOA staff, has developed a dynamic design to display over 2,000 works of art within the 40,000 square feet of gallery space. This project requires a complete gallery deinstallation, renovation, and reorganization of permanent storage locations, updates to structural and mechanical features, and reinstallation in the renovated space.
PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES & DUTIES:
- Conserve objects in the Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas collection and relevant objects in the American Wing collection, including examination, treatment, and oversight of environmental conditions in storerooms and galleries.
- Collaborate with the embedded AAOA conservator, collections managers, curators, technicians, and other staff to plan and execute objects-related aspects of AAOA gallery renovation project, including supervision of temporary staff.
- Examine and document objects for acquisition, incoming or outgoing loans, and gifts.
- Examine objects for questions of material identification and technology, including use of analytical instrumentation such as X-radiography and microscopy.
- Prepare samples for analysis by the Department of Scientific Research, and communicate with scientists regarding goals and results.
- Liaise with conservators, preparators, curators, technicians, riggers, Buildings staff, Exhibitions staff, and the Registrar’s Office on incoming and outgoing loans, exhibitions, permanent gallery rotations, and storage concerns.
- Prepare visual and written documentation of treatments and research, and file according to department protocols.
- Travel domestically and internationally as needed to examine, treat, and courier artworks in connection with loans.
- Manage department’s Integrated Pest Management protocols in collaboration with wider Museum initiatives.
- Supervise contract conservators, fellows, and students.
- Assist senior staff in time-sensitive projects as assigned by Conservator in Charge.
- Participate in departmental fundraising activities.
- Broaden knowledge of the conservation field by taking advantage of the department’s expertise and resources, and the Museum's opportunities for professional development.
- Disseminate activities and findings in a range of platforms including public and professional lectures, and print and digital publications.
- Other duties as assigned.
REQUIREMENTS & QUALIFICATIONS:
Experience and Skills:
- Minimum of two years of professional experience working in a museum required.
- Experience in the examination and treatment of a wide range of objects, including both organic and inorganic materials, required.
- Expertise in the examination and treatment of objects from Africa, Oceania, and/or pre-conquest America preferred.
- Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal skills required.
- Skill using state-of-the-art conservation documentation tools, including digital photography, multi-spectral imaging, and Reflectance Transformation Imaging preferred.
- Ability to lift up to 50 pounds and work on a ladder or rig required.
Knowledge and Education:
- Master's degree from an internationally recognized graduate conservation program or the equivalent required.
- FDNY C-14 Laboratory Certificate of Fitness or willingness and ability to attain certification within six months of hire required.
HOW TO APPLY:
Please send resumes and cover letters to: Careers@metmuseum.org.
Please use the following in the subject line of the e-mail: “Dept-Objects Conservation-Assistant Conservator”
The Metropolitan Museum of Art provides equal opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, age, mental or physical disability, pregnancy, alienage or citizenship status, marital status or domestic partner status, genetic information, genetic predisposition or carrier status, gender identity, HIV status, military status and any other category protected by law in all employment decisions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, compensation, training and apprenticeship, promotion, upgrading, demotion, downgrading, transfer, lay-off and termination, and all other terms and conditions of employment. AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and national service alumni encouraged to apply.