Sr Conservator of Paintings

The J. Paul Getty Trust - Los Angeles, CA4.3

30+ days agoFull-time
Job Summary The J. Paul Getty Museum seeks a Senior Conservator of Paintings to lead the department of Paintings Conservation, which is responsible for the long-term study and care of one of the finest collections of Old Master and nineteenth-century European paintings in the United States. The Senior Conservator oversees an active program of study and treatments, including technical and materials analyses, and supports an ambitious program of loan exhibitions. The Senior Conservator is a respected member of the profession who represents the institution in the negotiation of joint projects with other institutions while advancing its reputation as a leader on conservation matters internationally. He/she also oversees department staffing, hiring, performance reviews, staff development, and the budget.

The successful candidate will have a Master’s Degree, ten years’ experience as a paintings conservator, a record of successful treatments and professional publications, and proven ability as a manager. The Senior Conservator of Paintings will recommend treatments, assess potential acquisitions, and propose research and collaborative projects and will contribute to researching, developing, and overseeing innovative methodologies for long-term preservation of paintings in support of the Getty's leadership role among museums and cultural institutions. The Senior Conservator reports to the Associate Director for Collections and works closely and collaboratively with the Senior Curator of Paintings, as well as with other conservators and with colleagues across the Getty campus.

The Senior Conservator supervises a conservation department of four conservators (one specializing in frames), one Senior Staff Assistant, and one Graduate Intern. She/he will nurture staff development and review staff performance as well as setting broad departmental and individual goals. The Senior Conservator is responsible for managing the department’s budget and for insuring that all safety procedures are followed. She/he will play a leadership role in overseeing the activities of the Paintings Council. The Senior Conservator works collaboratively with Museum curators, scientists and staff of the Getty Conservation Institute (GCI), colleagues across the two Getty campuses, and internationally to further the programs and mission of the J. Paul Getty Museum under the auspices of the Getty Trust.

Major Job Responsibilities
  • Responsible for all conservation treatments within the department
  • Discusses and plans treatments with staff, supervises conservation treatment at all stages
  • Supervises work done by consultants and conservators from other institutions when using Getty facilities or when working on Getty collections
  • Decisions impact objectives, priorities and work activities for the department and related areas of the institution
  • Administers and oversees activities in the department including budgets, staffing, performance planning and review, and staff development
  • Sets priorities for major conservation and restoration projects within the collection
  • Responsible for developing policies for the department’s conservation practice
  • Responsible for overall preventive conservation of department’s collections as well as art on loan to the museum
  • May play an active role working with curators in the development of exhibitions
  • Advises the curators on technical issues related to potential acquisitions and de‐accessions
  • Ensures that projects are completed on schedule and within budget
  • Performs research, lectures and publishes reports and articles in area of specialization in scholarly journals or periodicals
  • Travels nationally and internationally to maintain expert knowledge and to develop partnerships with other institutions and professionals
  • Remains current in conservation practices and leads research resulting in advancements in the conservation field
  • Initiates and leads complex collaborative projects

  • MA in conservation or equivalent degree
  • 10+ years experience in conservation - preferred

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
  • Recognized ability to collaborate and direct teams across disciplines and to build long‐term relationships
  • Expert knowledge of chemical and physical properties of art materials, conservation materials and deterioration processes within specialized areas of conservation
  • Expert hand skills including manual dexterity, color acuity, artistic practice and sensitivity for objects
  • Expert knowledge of conservation history, ethics and methodology
  • Expert knowledge of scientific instrumentation and ability to operate analytical and technical imaging equipment
  • Expert in art historical, scientific and conservation research and writing
  • Expert knowledge of collection management and digital asset management tools
  • Expert knowledge of emergency preparedness and emergency response procedures