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22 Nov 2018

Full-Time Director of Collections – Museum

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art  San Francisco, California, United States

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art - jobs

Job Description

A key component of Curatorial Affairs at SFMOMA, the Collections Division develops and refines integrated, museum-wide approaches to stewardship and research for modern and contemporary art. The Division, established in 2000, aligns six departments—Conservation, Registration, Collections Information and Access, Library and Archives, Accessions, Collections Center—to create a work culture and stewardship strategies wherein compelling, productive collaborations thrive. Highlight accomplishments of the Division include: an internationally recognized contemporary art conservation fellowship program, the SFMOMA Oral History Project (2005-2009), The Artist Initiative (2014-2019) and the formation of a board-level committee dedicated to developing museum resources for collections research and community engagement initiatives (2017).


The Director of Collections is responsible for institution-wide efforts to steward the museum’s art and design holdings. This includes ensuring its physical care, working with the artists and designers represented in the collection to understand their studio practices, and keeping rich informational and visual collection records that are readily shared, both internally and externally, through new technologies, academic collaborations and educational programs.

The Director of Collections leads the Division, integrating collections activities with SFMOMA’s exhibitions, public programs and interpretation strategies. They are a vital partner to colleagues in Curatorial, Education, Exhibitions, and Content Strategy and Digital Engagement in realizing dynamic programming in the galleries, online, and in all of the museum’s educational spaces (located within the museum and within the research and storage facility south of San Francisco).

This position serves as a member of senior leadership, oversees a total team of 50 FTEs and has direct supervision of six department heads—Accessions, Collections Information and Access, Conservation, Library/Archives, Registration and the Collections Center. The Division’s overall annual operating budget is $6M.


Creates and implements a museum-wide strategy for the stewardship of SFMOMA and Fisher collections; integrating care, research and access practices in the service of the public, staff, researchers and others.
Supervises museum’s six collections departments—Accessions, Collections Information and Access, Conservation, Library & Archives, Registration and Collections Center as well as the Artist Initiative.
Works closely with museum’s curators and other senior staff to advance effective, integrated museum practices for accessions, exhibitions, loans, publications (both print and online), and all aspects of storage, access, and environmental conditioning.
Serves as a senior member of the program team, working with curators to plan and implement programs for the collection, including collection-related tours, collection installations, and collections access and education programs.
Leads a Board-level committee whose purpose is to support deep exploration of the collections while pioneering new ways for our communities to discover and study it.
Oversees the global loans process, facilitating loan requests with the museum director, curators, and collections staff.
Works in close collaboration with the director, deputy museum director of curatorial affairs, and museum counsel in special collections-related projects (e.g., collection sharing agreements and promised gifts).
Works closely with the museum’s Development department on fundraising needs and opportunities. Works with Finance and Administration to ensure sound fiscal management of the Division.
Represents the museum to art-affiliated individuals and institutions on a local, national and international level. Continues professional development in the museum field.
Works with Facilities to monitor existing museum storage conditions for long-term care of the collection and contributes to planning and development of new spaces.
Co-leads the Collections Emergency Plan.
Performs other duties as assigned by the museum director and/or the deputy museum director for curatorial affairs.


Education and Training: M.A./M.S. in art history, arts administration, conservation or related museum field is required.

Work Experience: A minimum of ten years of increasingly responsible museum experience with at least seven years in a position of senior management, knowledge in modern and contemporary art, knowledge of collections information requirements and related procedures, in research methodologies.

Skills and Abilities: Outstanding management and supervisory skills, a desire to work in and lead a team-oriented environment, a high level of initiative, creative and flexible problem solving skills, and the ability to direct and motivate staff.



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POSITION: Director of Collections

DIVISION: Collections Division

SUPERVISOR: Deputy Museum Director, Curatorial Affairs

EDUCATION: Master’s Degree

POSITION TYPE: Full Time Permanent

We are an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity.

Job Categories: Museum and Gallery. Job Types: Full-Time. Job Tags: arts, director, exhibition, and museum. States: California.

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