Conservator (Newark, NJ, USA)

By Paid Job Ads posted 10-01-2019 15:19

Newark Museum
Position Announcement


Position Title: Conservator
Department: Registrar Department

Founded in 1909, the Newark Museum (“the Museum”) is one of the most influential museums in the United States and the largest art and education institution in New Jersey. Its extensive collections, which include art from around the world as well as significant holdings of science, technology and natural history, rank 12th in size nationally. The Museum is dedicated to artistic excellence, education and community engagement with an overarching commitment to broadening and diversifying arts participation.

A cultural anchor institution in Newark for more than a century, the Museum advances its mission by operating in the public trust as a museum of service, and as a leader in connecting objects and ideas to the needs and wishes of its constituencies. The Museum’s renowned art collections have the power to educate, inspire and transform individuals of all ages, and the local, regional, national and international communities that it serves. In the words of founder John Cotton Dana, “a good museum attracts, entertains, arouses curiosity, leads to questioning and thus promotes learning.” The Museum responds to the evolving needs and interests of the diverse audiences it serves by providing exhibitions, programming, a research library, partnerships and resources designed to enrich people’s lives.

The Museum’s collections are presented in 91 galleries housed on a seven-acre campus that encompasses the Ballantine House, a Victorian-era mansion—a National Historic Landmark, the Dreyfuss Memorial Garden, and Horizon Plaza. The Museum also features the Alice and Leonard Dreyfuss Planetarium as well as the MakerSPACE, a dedicated maker studio and exhibition space that offers interactive, hands-on activities for visitors all ages that integrate the arts with STEM learning.

Under the leadership of its new Director/CEO, Linda Harrison, the Newark Museum is poised for a chapter of transformation, exciting growth and development. The City of Newark is also undergoing a revival of its own.

Position Objective
The Newark Museum is seeking a full-time Conservator to oversee all conservation activities of the Museum’s collections, one of the larger and finest collections of art and science in the United States.  The Conservator will develop and oversee the implementation of best practices for the safekeeping, presentation, proper installation, and conservation of all works in the Newark Museum’s permanent collection (approximately 300,000 works).  This is a new position for the Museum and will collaborate with the Registrar and CEO on the direction that conservation will take at the Newark Museum.  The Conservator is responsible for recruiting, hiring, and overseeing the work of consultants, outfitting a laboratory, reviewing current handling procedures, and offering best practice suggestions to the Registrar and Collections Manager.

The conservator works closely and collaboratively with the Registrar, Collections Manager, Curatorial, and Exhibitions departments as well as with colleagues throughout the Museum, and. must possess the ability to build successful partnerships.  The Conservator is active in the conservation field and keeps abreast of changes that will affect the Museum.  The Conservator reports to the Registrar.

Specific Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Manages all conservation projects
  • Performs conservation treatment within their area of expertise
  • Manages consulting conservators
  • Maintains accurate records of work performed on Museum objects
  • Develops and maintains a conservation laboratory
  • Reviews all material requested for loan or exhibition regarding their physical condition, as well as potential treatment and recommendations and/or oversight of appropriate packing/crating
  • Provides expert opinion about the condition of proposed acquisitions
  • Trains and oversees preparators’ work on objects for loan and exhibition
  • Helps develop and review art moving projects and storage upgrades including object re-housing
  • Condition reports as needed during exhibition installation
  • Responds to incidents
  • Works with facilities department to keep the Museum environment at standards
  • Works on collection maintenance and grant projects as required
  • Assigns staff to projects as needed
  • Other activities as directed


  • Supervise Assistants, interns and other technicians as needed
  • Administers contract conservation


  • Master’s Degree from an accredited conservation training program
  • Five years’ experience as a Conservator
  • Knowledge of materials and ability to advise on collections care and treatment strategies
  • Experience with the housing and storage of museum collections
  • Familiarity with budget development and maintenance, grant supervision, and general office administration
  • Strong communication and managerial skills and ability to collaborate with all museum departments.
  • Knowledge of MS Office suite including but not limited to Word, Outlook, Excel and PowerPoint
  • Knowledge of TMS database a plus. Museum background a positive.
Salary range:  $55,000 - $60,000

Send letter of application and resume to:

Human Resources
The Newark Museum
49 Washington Street
Newark, NJ 07101
Fax#:  973-642-0459

The Newark Museum is an equal opportunity employer.