Information on job, internship, and other opportunities to work at the University of Chicago's Smart Museum of Art.
Dana Feitler Director
The University of Chicago invites applications for the Dana Feitler Director of the Smart Museum of Art.
The Smart Museum is a university art museum that supports field-defining research and teaching of faculty and students; annually presents several dynamic, often path-breaking exhibitions; and offers distinctive public programs that convey the significance of the visual arts across periods and cultures. Through its impressive collection and its intensive collaboration with scholars, the Smart has established itself as a driving force for thinking creatively about the history and exhibition of artworks, and thus contributes to Chicago’s status as one the premiere art capitals of the world.
As the chief executive of the Smart Museum, the Dana Feitler Director will promote and support education and scholarship of the highest caliber in the visual arts, and define the Smart’s position as a leader in the museum field as well as in research and education in the visual arts. The Director is responsible for providing overall leadership, vision, and guidance to the Museum and its staff. S/he is charged with ensuring that the Museum remains a vibrant and active institution in the local community and regularly engages with its peers nationally and globally. The Director serves as the principal ambassador for the Museum to students and faculty, other influential members of the campus community, the Governing Board and University Advisory Committee, alumni and major supporters, as well as the larger public. The Director is the key driver in creating a cohesive and effective organization and staff, fostering teamwork, and creating an environment in which all staff members work together effectively and efficiently in order to meet institutional goals.
The Smart Museum of Art’s next Director will be a persuasive and inventive leader who is inspired by the Museum’s mission and can inspire others as well. S/he should possess the intellectual vigor and vision, as well as the sterling reputation and personal magnetism that are necessary to encourage trust and to galvanize support for the Museum. The successful candidate will be a strategic and energetic leader who is collaborative, diplomatic, and inspires confidence. S/he must have seven to ten years of leadership experience in an art museum setting. An advanced degree in an art-related field required; a PhD is a plus, as is equivalent professional and leadership experience in a comparable setting.
This is an exciting opportunity to lead a unique institution into its next chapter with the strong commitment of the University and the Museum’s Board of Governors. The next Director will play a powerful role in helping to shape a thriving arts culture on campus and to augment that culture’s outward engagement with the prominent arts scene in Chicago’s South Side and in the city at large.
The Smart Museum of Art, the University of Chicago has retained the executive search firm of Korn Ferry to assist in the search. Please email nominations and applications (resume and cover letter) to: Naree W.S. Viner, Principal, at SmartDirector@kornferry.com.
All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, protected veteran status or status as an individual with disability. The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity / Disabled / Veterans Employer. Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process may contact Somaiyya Ahmad by calling 773.702.9798 or by emailing email@example.com with their request.
The Search Committee will begin reviewing candidates in late February and will continue to review applicants until the position is filled.
Interim Curator of Asian Art
Please note: The Smart Museum is currently conducting an international search for a new Director. This full-time interim curatorial position has been created for approximately twelve months beginning as soon as possible and continuing through Fall 2017.
The Interim Curator of Asian Art will serve as a coordinating curator for previously planned exhibitions and will be primarily responsible for the annual reinstallation of the Museum’s permanent collection. In collaboration with other museum colleagues, s/he will work closely with faculty, guest curators, and students to support, encourage, and develop related public programs for exhibitions and collection installations that strengthen the Museum’s engagement with Asian art.
As a member of the Smart Museum’s highly collaborative collections, exhibitions and education team, the interim curator has primary responsibility for the coordination of exhibitions, collection installations, research, and publications in this key area of the Smart Museum’s collection. In addition, working with the Smart’s Curator and Associate Director of Academic Initiatives, the curator encourages curricular and co-curricular collaboration with the Departments of Art History, Visual Arts and others whose content expertise aligns with Asian exhibition projects and collection installations. Reporting to the Interim Director of the Smart Museum (or his designee), the Interim Asian Art Curator works in close partnership with the other members of the collections, exhibition and education team.
- As coordinating curator, work closely with faculty, guest curators, students, and other Smart Museum colleagues to support, encourage, and develop exhibitions, collections installations, and related public programs that strengthen the Museum’s engagement with Asian art.
- As a member of the Smart Museum’s highly collaborative collections, exhibitions and education team (CEE), the Interim modern curator has primary responsibility for directing exhibition, collections installations, research, publication activities and acquisitions in this key area of the Smart Museum’s collection.
- Encourage curricular and co-curricular collaboration with the Departments of Art History, Visual Arts and others whose content expertise aligns with the Asian art exhibition projects and collection installations.
- Develop and manage Exhibition budgets.
- Serve as a member of the Smart Museum’s staff and assist with various programs and projects. This includes coordination with colleagues across UChicago Arts, representing the Smart Museum on various arts-related committees both within the University and beyond, and other duties as assigned.
The ideal candidate must possess:
- A familiarity with both traditional and contemporary Asian art, with experience working in Chinese, Japanese, or Korean art
- Eagerness to work within the unique environment of a research university such as the University of Chicago, where a commitment to rigorous debate, field-changing research, and boundary-breaking collaborations is fundamental.
- At least two (2) years of progressively more responsible experience working in art museums on a part-time or full-time basis.
- A graduate degree in Art History or a related field or equivalent relevant experience required, Ph.D. desirable.
- A record of work on innovative research and exhibitions.
- Dedication to the care and stewardship of artworks and knowledge of conservation issues
- Exceptional organizational skills required. Must be able to oversee complex projects and schedules, maintain deadlines, establish and work within budgets, with the ability to set priorities and manage several projects simultaneously required. Ability to successfully manage a workload that balances long-range planning with the unanticipated daily demands of art exhibition spaces required.
- Familiarity with the full range of current issues in museum practice particularly as they affect the acquisition, exhibition, and interpretation of traditional and contemporary Asian art
- An ability to speak, read, and write in English required and Chinese and/or Korean and/or Japanese preferred.
- A substantial commitment to collaboration of all types, with museum colleagues, students, faculty, and external partners
- Comfort in establishing positive and effective relationships with internal and external communities, including major donors and collectors, board members, artists, members of the press, art dealers, professionals at other institutions, faculty, students, and the public required
- Excellent written and spoken communication skills with the ability to synthesize and accurately present relevant information required.
- Knowledge of database management software preferred
- Willingness and ability to work occasional evenings and weekends as required.
- Organizational and human relations skills with ability to collaborate well and supportively and cultivate good relationships with colleagues within the Museum and its many collaborators.
- The temperament to work with a diverse and demanding population is expected.
- Must be self-directed and self-motivated, able to set goals and develop projects.
- Clear, effective, and tactful oral and written communication skills; ability to handle sensitive information with discretion.
- Ability to prioritize and execute multiple tasks simultaneously with an ability to view a project in its entirety.
- The successful oversight of exhibition installations in a 10,000 square foot set of galleries requires the ability to conduct regular building rounds.
- Considerable office work.
- Ability to occasionally travel out of town.
Submit resume and cover letter via jobopportunities.uchicago.edu (search requisition #101170).
Manager of Development
Reporting to the Director of Development and External Relations, and working in close collaboration with the Manager of Strategic Communications/Grant Writer, and other members of the D&ER team, the Development Manager bears primary responsibility for all aspects of the Smart Museum's annual fund (SmartPartners) programs as well as the maintenance and analysis of fundraising data, serving as a key expert on the University's Griffin database. This individual is also the primary contact person for members, donors, and prospects below the major gifts ($10,000) level and works with a portfolio of high-level annual fund contributors, up to $10,000.
As an essential member of the Museum's fundraising staff, the development manager develops goal-driven annual appeals that combine direct mail, email, web-based, and personal solicitations. This individual helps develop strategic stewardship practices designed to move donors toward increased levels of giving and engagement.
- Plans and implements a variety of programs to cultivate and solicit annual gifts from various donor populations and special constituencies, increasing the level and number of contributors annually
- Identifies, recruits and manages volunteer committees as needed and helps to support other key volunteers through periodic reports, meetings, and related stewardship activities
- Gathers and manipulates data extracted from various applications to obtain information on prospects, prepare reports, and analyze progress and results
- Uses research on giving patterns to improve solicitation techniques
- Develops and implements annual giving strategies that include direct mail, phone, web, email correspondence and personal solicitation
- Working with other staff members, designs and crafts language for campaign appeals, scripts, brochures, volunteer guides, and other appropriate written material
- Collaborates with other divisions and schools, as appropriate, to provide support in stewardship and recognition efforts for annual fund donors
- Develops and manages an annual budget
- Perform other duties as assigned. Seek opportunities for professional development that will enhance job performance.
Experience and Competencies
- Minimum of two years of work experience in annual giving, nonprofit management, development, alumni relations, marketing, public relations or similar professional work experience, required.
- Knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite and other databases required. Excellent verbal and written communication skills, required.
- Understanding of the University of Chicago, its history, organization, and modus operandi, preferred.
- Experience with direct mail and marketing programs, preferred.
- Donor database experience, preferred
- interact with higher level annual fund donors, alumni, faculty, peers, and administrators
- motivate groups of people and individuals to support the Museum
- manipulate, analyze, and interpret data in numerous formats and using a variety of technology systems
- excel as part of a highly motivated staff
- think strategically about individual tasks in relationship to broader institutional and departmental goals, and to allocate time and resources for maximum operational effectiveness
- work independently, to prioritize among multiple concurrent projects, and to meet deadlines
- work collegially and collaboratively in an open office environment and with a variety of personalities
- manage confidential information with discretion and tact
- Outstanding interpersonal and communications skills characterized by the ability to listen, to speak, and to write well
- High attention to detail and follow-up, and excellent organizational skills
- Strong problem-solving skills, a high level of judgment, and rigorous attention to detail
- Flexibility and adaptability to new programs in an emerging and changing environment
- Willingness and ability to travel to campus and/or non-campus locations for University business required
- Willingness and ability to work evenings and weekends required
- Bachelor's degree or higher, required
Full-time, benefits eligible.
Submit resume, cover letter, and reference contact information via jobopportunities.uchicago.edu (search requisition #100880).
Smart Museum docents serve as public ambassadors for the Smart Museum and assist the Museum in fulfilling its educational mission as gallery teachers for a range of K-12, University, and adult audiences. Docents also assist with the facilitation of family programming. Docents are required to complete a 12-week mandatory paid training course and attend ongoing training sessions.
Docent positions are available to University of Chicago students (undergraduates preferred) as well as Odyssey Project alumni.
The Smart is not currently seeking new docents. Applications for the next docent cohort will be made available in 2017.
University of Chicago student positions
The following jobs and internships are only available to University of Chicago students.
University of Chicago students gain direct experience in museum work through year- and summer-long internships in a variety of areas, including our curatorial, registration, education, marketing, and business offices. Qualifications vary by department; all positions are paid and require approximately 10–19 hours of work each week.
There are no open internships at this time. Please check back in the future.
Café Attendants are an integral part of the hospitality team at the Smart Museum and ensure that our patrons have a welcoming, positive experience in the Smart Café. Café attendants are responsible for serving coffee and prepared foods to patrons of the Smart Museum, as well as selling gift shop merchandise. We are looking for friendly, personable students who would enjoy working in a museum setting. Work schedules are flexible quarterly to fit around a student’s class schedule.
University of Chicago student. Strong interpersonal and customer service skills required. Interest in visual art encouraged. Previous food service or retail experience preferred, but not required. Work study eligible.
Starting immediately with year-round employment, approximately 8–15 hours per week.
Starts at $10/hour plus tips.
To apply, please fill out an application at the Museum’s information desk. Applications are always accepted. If you have questions, contact Kate Kelly, Café and Gift Shop Manager.
The Smart Museum of Art’s Gallery Attendants are responsible for maintaining security within the Smart Museum gallery and lobby areas during public hours. Within this role, the Gallery Attendant acts as a public representative of the Museum and the University by greeting patrons and providing information as needed. Work schedules are flexible quarterly and can be designed to fit around a student’s class schedule. Docents who wish to receive additional working hours at the Museum are strongly encouraged to apply and will receive a premium hourly rate.
University of Chicago student. Excellent verbal communication and interpersonal skills. Interest in visual art encouraged. Ability to stand for long periods of time. Work-study encouraged, but not required.
Starting immediately with year-round employment, approximately 8–15 hours per week.
$10/hour; higher if a multi-session docent cross-training program is completed
To apply, please fill out an application at the Museum’s information desk. Applications are always accepted.
The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information, please see the University’s Notice of Nondiscrimination. Academic job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773.702.5671 or email ACOppAdministrator@uchicago.edu with their request. Staff job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773.834.1841 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with their request.