Dumbarton Oaks is a Harvard research institute, museum, library, and historic garden in Washington, D.C. The institute supports research and learning internationally in Byzantine, Garden and Landscape, and Pre-Columbian studies. The Museum is renowned for its world-class Byzantine and Pre-Columbian collections, and select works of European art. The Museum, open six days/week free of charge, has close ties to local and Harvard communities and engages scholars and visitors from all over the world through exhibitions, gallery talks, and class visits. Dumbarton Oaks is a vibrant home of the humanities with an overarching mission of communicating the value of culture and advanced research to the broadest possible public.
The Museum Director will lead the Museum team in planning and delivering innovative exhibits that will highlight the Dumbarton Oaks collections and may include collaborations with the three programs of study and the library, rare book, and image collections. The Museum Director will oversee long-term exhibition planning, budget, and all aspects of Museum operations, in close conjunction with other departments of Dumbarton Oaks. The ideal candidate will combine deep knowledge of at least one area of the Dumbarton Oaks collections with the promise of strong leadership and a proven record of collaboration. The incumbent will join Dumbarton Oaks at an exciting time of expansion of both our academic and our public programs and will be encouraged to foster links between the Museum and the research institute, help develop new educational programs for DC students, and provide open and free access to the collections through digital initiatives.
Duties and Responsibilities
- Oversees all aspects of Museum operations including administration, budget, and staff.
- Oversees exhibition planning and delivery, leading the Museum team and collaborating with other Dumbarton Oaks departments as well as external partners where appropriate.
- Oversees handling, conservation, insurance, and loans of collections.
- Collaborates closely with the Directors of Facilities and Security on building maintenance and security; and with the Managers of Events and Communications on public programs.
- Oversees the digital or print publication of Museum collection and exhibition catalogues.
- Oversees the transition to, and future maintenance of, an updated collections management system.
- Leads the overhaul of the Museum digital and web presence, including the provision of open access catalogues and high-resolution images of the Museum collections.
- Engages actively with new scholarship relating to the Dumbarton Oaks collections, as well as with the most up-to-date museum practices and initiatives, through attendance of conferences and professional meetings as appropriate.
- Mentors fellows and interns from Harvard University as part of Dumbarton Oaks’ skill-building programs for early-career humanists.
- Maintains coordination with Harvard University policies as appropriate.
- Performs special projects and duties as required by the Director and Executive Director.
Manage a team of ten full-time museum professionals.
Advanced degree in art history or museum studies required, Minimum four to six years’ museum management experience, including responsibility for a professional staff and budget. Proven administrative and leadership ability, ideally in a museum setting.
Advanced degree in Byzantine or Pre-Columbian Art highly preferred. PhD preferred. Strong data and collection management skills. Excellent communication skills; collegiality, initiative, and versatility in a fast-paced environment that is committed to the highest standards of museum and scholarly practice.
This position is open until filled. Position posted January 22, 2019.