« Back to all jobs Director & Curator of Collections

  • Employer: Frye Art Museum
  • Salary: $100k - $120k

The Director & Curator of Collections, a newly created position, will oversee all aspects of Frye’s permanent collection, archives, and registration. A member of the museum’s senior leadership team, they are responsible for the strategic and long-term direction of the permanent collection, day-to-day management of their department, and organization of collection displays and interpretation throughout the museum. This role reports to the Executive Director, oversees a collections and registration team of 3-5 staff, and frequently collaborates with the exhibitions team to steward the collections, archives, and artwork loans.

Through their work, the Director & Curator contributes to a culture of collaboration, community, and respect and centers the work of Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEAIB) in all areas of the department.

Charged with the care, preservation, and risk management of Frye’s collections and ensuring that the collections are available for current and future visitors, the Director & Curator is also responsible for all aspects of record-keeping for the permanent collections, loan materials and library and archives. This position also implements and enforces the Collection Department’s policies and practices, including ones pertaining to the acquisition, management, and disposition of art. This leadership role is responsible for balancing a complex and interconnecting set of priorities, ranging from digitization of the collection to keeping up to date with best practices and innovation in the physical care and storage of artworks.

  • Supervise Registrar, Collection Manager, Collection Assistant, volunteers, and/or interns on projects related to the permanent collection.
  • Oversee maintenance of EmbARK database to ensure integrity of data and records management for the collection as well as collection statistic and demographic data to ensure accountability and accurate reporting
  • Manage Registrar to oversee loans from the collection to outside institutions and the display of objects in Frye presentations
  • Collaborate across the museum to develop tools and resources to widen access to the collection through exhibition, digitization, interpretation, and other methods and increase visibility of the collection both internally and externally
  • Work with Facilities and leadership staff to assess opportunities and storage for the permanent collection and the museum’s library and archives
  • Manage annual collections department budget as well as acquisition finances, special funds, and proposed expenditures
  • Maintain the museum’s Collection Management Policy and engage staff and board leadership to update and amend this policy in accordance with field standards and institutional needs
  • Participate in museum events, trips, and donor study opportunities, including planning and travel, as needed
  • Other duties as directed by the Executive Director.

Since opening in 1952, the museum has regularly organized rotating exhibitions and displays featuring its “founding collection,” including thematic interpretations, interventions by living artists and scholars, and the acclaimed Frye Salon. In subsequent years, the collections have expanded to include nearly 1500 additional modern and contemporary artworks. Building on these unique holdings and the Frye’s history as a site of experimentation, the Director & Curator will collaboratively guide the collection’s trajectory of growth, assuring best practices and alignment with the museum’s curatorial and strategic priorities.

  • Provide curatorial expertise and leadership on all aspects of the permanent collection and serve as the point person for internal and external questions related to the collection.
  • In partnership with senior leadership team and advisory committee(s), develop a collection plan with long-term goals and acquisition priorities and aligned with the Frye’s strategic plans.
  • Pitch, curate and advise on rigorous and innovative exhibitions and displays of the permanent collection that advance new narratives and increase depth of knowledge about the collection.
  • Co-lead Arts Committee meetings, provide coordination among staff to assure the success of meetings and that collection policy and procedures are followed.
  • Actively research, assess, and propose potential acquisitions, developing and maintaining priority lists of artists and artworks in collaboration with Chief Curator & Director of Exhibitions.
  • Participate in the creation and management of interpretive strategies, publicity materials, and public programs for a variety of audiences related to the collection.
  • Keep current on research related to the founding collection and contemporary art and maintain peer contacts with other local, national, and international museum professionals, artists, scholars, gallerists and collectors in order to serve the museum’s needs.

Note: This is not necessarily an all-inclusive list of position-related responsibilities, duties, skills, efforts, requirements, or working conditions. While the above is intended to be an accurate reflection of the current job, management reserves the right to revise the job or to require that other or different tasks be performed as assigned.

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