Employment

Information on job, internship, and other opportunities to work at the University of Chicago's Smart Museum of Art. 


Staff positions

Director of Development

The Director of Development will be responsible for leading and coordinating arts related fundraising efforts for the Smart Museum of Art. Reporting to the Dana Feitler Director of the Smart Museum of Art and the Assistant Vice President for Development, Arts and Humanities, the Director will design and implement comprehensive strategies to identify, cultivate and solicit annual, major and principal gifts donors in collaboration with Smart leadership, Smart Board of Governors and development colleagues. Working closely with the Smart and University Alumni Relations and Development teams, the Director will identify funding opportunities, support individual and foundation donor engagement opportunities and solicitations, and collaborate with the Smart Board and Smart Director to develop strategic approaches for fundraising growth. Director of Development is a senior fundraising position with management responsibilities for the Smart Museum fundraising team and will also work closely with other arts leaders across the UChicago Arts initiative and develop partnerships with other appropriate UChicago fundraising colleagues.

Responsibilities

Competencies

Preferred qualifications

Compensation
This is a full-time (37.5 hours/week), benefits-eligible position. Compensation depends on qualifications.

To apply
To apply, please submit a resume and cover letter through the University of Chicago jobs portal. Search posting number JR04790. 


Docent program

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 programming across the museum, including family engagement, collaborative arts partnerships, and public programs addressing critical contemporary issues.  Docents are supported through paid training course, mentorship structure, and ongoing training sessions with guest facilitators.

Docent positions are available to University of Chicago students as well as Odyssey Project alumni.

The Smart does not have open docent positions at this time. Please check back in the future. 


University of Chicago student positions

The following jobs and internships are only available to University of Chicago students.


Internships

University of Chicago undergraduate and graduate 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 during the academic year with full-time positions often available during the summer.

Collections Stewardship Intern

Reporting to the Deputy Director for Museum Affairs and Strategic Impact, the Intern will provide research and support for a work entering the Smart collection entitled Thrival Geographies (In My Mind I see a Line), 2018, by Amanda Williams + Andres L. Hernandez, in collaboration with Shani Crowe. In its short life, Thrival Geographies has been on display at the Venice Biennale and at Wrightwood 659 in Chicago. The work was part of a larger exhibition exploring migration, borderlands, and the substance of home. As Blair Kamin of the Chicago Tribune reported in May 2018, the U.S. pavilion was “a platform for designers to envision spaces and structures fit for a world where technological, economic and social change runs in perpetual overdrive.” Thrival Geographies (In My Mind I see a Line) at the U.S pavilion in Venice, 2018.

In Summer 2019, the sculpture will find a home at the University of Chicago and this internship will focus on the intellectual and material terms of its stewardship as a work in the collection of the Smart Museum of Art.

Principle Responsibilities
Principle responsibilities include working with the Deputy Director for Museum Affairs and Strategic Impact, curators, the exhibition and registration teams to develop a pluralistic collections file with core information, published critique and interpretation, artist interviews and conservation documentation. Principles of interviewing will be included in this internship, hopefully including discussions with the artists who made the work. The Intern will also participate in conversations about the sculpture’s ultimate disposition on campus.

Skills that will be Gained from this Experience 
Through this experience in collections research and stewardship, the Intern will gain in-depth knowledge in the acquisitions, exhibitions and interpretation processes which underpin the way university art museums keep their collections.

Eligible Students
All undergraduate and graduate students that are actively enrolled at UChicago. (Please note—students graduating June 2019 are not eligible.) Academic Majors and sub-disciplines: Art History, History, Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies, English, or Visual Arts preferred, but all majors are welcome to apply.

Preferred Skills
Excellent research, writing, editing and communication skills, close attention to detail, and a high degree of organization.

Hours and compensation
This is a full-time position (37.5 hours/week) during summer 2019. Start and end dates TBD. Pay rate: Undergrad—$13/hr; Masters students—$14/hr; PhD students—$16/hr.

To apply
Provide a CV, 350 word statement of interest, names of two references, and unofficial transcript. Submit application via e-mail to Jill Sterrett, Deputy Director for Museum Affairs and Strategic Impact, sterrettj@uchicago.edu.

The position will remain open until filled.


Curatorial Internship

Reporting to the Associate Curator for Modern & Contemporary Art at the Smart Museum of Art, the Curatorial Intern will provide academic research and curatorial support for the forthcoming exhibition Contemporary History Painting (title tbd) opening September 2020. This largescale group exhibition will center around the art historical genre of the history painting and examine the contemporary artists who have expanded upon this legacy of documenting and deconstructing socio-political events as they unfold. The Curatorial Intern will work closely with the curators of the exhibition: Dana Feitler Director, Alison Gass, Professor and Chair of the Department of Art History and Adjunct Curator, Christine Mehring, and Associate Curator, Jennifer Carty. Gaining in-depth experience of the exhibition process, the Curatorial Intern’s duties will include, conducting artist research, managing the exhibition checklist, assisting with exhibition didactics, liaising with multiple museum departments, drafting loan letters, among others. This position may also provide curatorial support for the museum’s permanent collection of modern & contemporary art and additional exhibitions as assigned.

Principle Responsibilities
Principle responsibilities include, working closely with the Associate Curator and exhibitions team to maintain the exhibition checklist, conduct artist research, liaise with multiple museum departments, assist with exhibition didactics, assist with exhibition layout strategies, among others.

Skills that will be Gained from this Experience 
The Curatorial Intern will gain in-depth knowledge of the curatorial and exhibitions process as well as the inter-workings of a university art museum

Eligible Students
All undergraduate and graduate students that are actively enrolled at UChicago. (Please note—students graduating June 2019 are not eligible.) Art History, History, Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies, English, or Visual Arts preferred, but all majors are welcome to apply.

Preferred Skills
Excellent writing, editing and communication skills, close attention to detail, and a high degree of organization.

Hours and compensation
This is a full-time position (37.5 hours/week) during summer 2019. Start and end dates TBD. Pay rate: Undergrad—$13/hr; Masters students—$14/hr; PhD students—$16/hr.

To apply
Provide a CV, 350 word statement of interest, names of two references, and unofficial transcript. Submit application via e-mail to to Jennifer Carty, Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary, jcarty@uchicago.edu.

The position will remain open until filled.


Smart Scholars and Research Associates

"Exhibition in Practice" Summer Undergraduate Research Associates

The "Exhibition in Practice" Summer Undergraduate Research Associates opportunities build on the work produced in “Exhibition in Practice I,” a spring 2019 Art History course in which students develop the concept and object checklist for an exhibition of their own design to be installed at the Smart Museum of Art in fall 2019.

Undergraduate research associates will conduct in-depth object research, compile bibliographies, organize and participate in interviews with collectors and artists, and perform administrative duties in support of the exhibition. The students’ work to compile essential information will be enormously helpful in providing material for sharing the content of the exhibition internally at the Smart, around campus, and to our broader communities. Course instructor for “Exhibition in Practice,” Leslie Wilson (Curatorial Fellow for Diversity in the Arts, Smart Museum of Art) and the curatorial assistant for the project, Berit Ness (Assistant Curator of Academic Initiatives, Smart Museum of Art) will coordinate and advise the research associates' activities.

Primary responsibilities
Students are at the helm of “Exhibition in Practice.” Summer research associates for this project will gain hands on experience in object research and the ways that the work in question can drive methods of investigation, sending them everywhere from archives to individuals to conservation for answers. Object-research is combined with the incremental tasks of gathering key information and laying the foundations for the next steps of exhibition development, which includes compiling bibliographies and timelines, writing short artists’ and collectors’ biographies, and conducting preparatory research for interviews. The undergraduate researchers hone skills in research that emphasizes primary sources. In meetings over the summer, interns meet with the project advisors to discuss strategies for getting deeper into their research and to explore how to bring those sources to bear on narratives produced for the exhibition. They are encouraged to not only find answers, but to also develop and track important questions to be pursued in the future. As such, they participate in the process of long-term research in an institutional setting, which involves prioritizing aspects of their investigations and making plans for future research efforts.

Research and writing produced by summer researchers will feature in the final exhibition, which will be installed in fall 2019 as part of “Exhibition in Practice II.” Summer interns also have the opportunity to see first-hand how their work connects to other aspects of the museum’s mission. While their research is conducted under the auspices of curatorial practice, they will be able to see how coordination between all parts of the museum is vital to completing their respective projects. They will attend exhibition process meetings with Exhibitions and Registration staff. They will also participate in get-togethers with all summer researchers from across the museum, including presentations by researchers about their projects and lunchtime chats with staff about their career paths and museum specialties.

Knowledge or skills gained from the experience
Through these summer research experiences, undergraduates will gain hands-on experience with object research and the ways that the work in question can drive methods of investigation, sending them everywhere from archives to individuals to conservation for answers. Object-research is combined with the incremental tasks of compiling key information and laying the foundations for the next steps of exhibition development. Students hone skills in developing bibliographies that emphasize primary sources and writing for a variety of audiences. They also have the opportunity to see first-hand how their work connects to other aspects of the museum’s mission as a necessarily collaborative endeavor. Students will be supervised and mentored by Leslie Wilson, Curatorial Fellow for Diversity in the Arts, and Berit Ness, Assistant Curator of Academic Initiatives at the Smart Museum of Art.

Eligible students
Undergraduate students actively enrolled at the University of Chicago. (Unfortunately, this opportunity is *not* open to graduating 4th-years. If you will be graduating at the end of August, you are eligible.) Summer researchers should have completed coursework in Art History, preferably modern and contemporary art. Preference will be given to students enrolled in “Exhibition in Practice I” in spring 2019 and/or “Exhibition in Practice II” in fall 2019.

Hours and compensation
This is a full-time position (40 hours/week). The opportunity begins on July 1, 2019 and continues for a 10-week period. The researchers will each receive a $4,000 grant. 

To apply
Provide a CV, names of two references, and unofficial transcript. Please submit your complete application ONLINE HERE.

These positions will remain open until filled.


Gallery Attendants

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.

Qualifications
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.

Hours
Starting immediately with year-round employment, approximately 8–15 hours per week.

Pay rate
$12/hour; higher if a multi-session docent cross-training program is completed

To apply
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 talentacquisition@uchicago.edu with their request.