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Assistant Director of Interpretation

How You Will Contribute

The Assistant Director of Interpretation, working under the direction of the Kathleen C. Sherrerd Senior Curator of Education, oversees the development and implementation of interpretive strategies and materials relating to the Museum’s permanent collection and special exhibitions.  In alignment with the Museum’s new strategic emphasis on “Activating the Collections”  he/she works closely with Museum educators, curators, designers, and the interpretative technology team to create new opportunities for visitors to have meaningful experiences with the collections and special exhibitions, and leads initiatives that will invite and inspire new and previously un-served Museum audiences.  The Assistant Director of Interpretation serves as an art historical resource within the Division of Education and develops new strategies for interpretation aligned with the Museum’s audience development goals and addressing the specific needs and interests of an increasingly diverse Museum audience. 

Specifically, you will:

  • In collaboration with the curatorial, design, and exhibition staff, develop and oversee the implementation of interpretive strategies for the presentation of the Museum’s permanent collection and special exhibitions to ensure these are aligned with other institutional objectives such as engaging new and diverse audiences and enhancing the visitor experience.
  • Work collaboratively with the curatorial departments and interpretative technology staff in developing digital interpretive technology tools in a variety of different formats (e.g., audio and multimedia tours, touch screen interactives, video podcasts, etc.) for use both in the galleries and on the Web.
  • Work collaboratively with the Audience Research team and at times, outside consultants, to define more precisely the interpretive interests of the Museum’s traditional visitors and of new audiences that that we would like to engage; evaluate visitor responses to interpretive approaches for the general museumgoer; establish learning outcomes for various interpretive strategies; and determine the effectiveness of these strategies.
  • Remain current with the theory and practice of interpretation in art museums.
  • Participate in conferences, committees, and professional groups nationally and locally which advocate for and investigate interpretation in museums.

Your diverse background includes:

  • M.A. or Ph.D. in Art History with a minimum of 5-7 years of relevant experience as a museum educator or curator in a supervisory capacity
  • Proven experience in and enthusiasm for leading/participating in museum interpretive projects
  • Proven interest and track record in engaging new and diverse Museum audiences
  • Possess a broad knowledge of the fields of museum education and visitor studies
  • Proven track record of active participation in the museum field, developing and maintaining relationships with other museum professionals, and participating in professional activities
  • Experienced in engaging new and traditional audiences with demonstrated  willingness to bring an open and experimental approach to understanding and advocating for new kinds of visitor experiences in museums, and in serving those target constituencies identified in the institutional strategic plan (e.g., diverse audiences, families, young adults)
  • Possess an enthusiasm for collaboration and relationship building among staff and stakeholders, and leadership experience in establishing and assessing interpretive goals and outcomes
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills are essential, as is an ability to work with the various computing tools that the staff is expected to use on a regular basis
  • Proven experience in writing interpretive materials for museums, preferably for multiple audiences
  • Familiarity with the use of new technologies to interpret the permanent collection and special exhibitions and to engage new audiences
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