Department Technician/Collections & Exhibitions Coordinator

The Art Institute of Chicago, founded in 1879, is a world-renowned art museum housing one of the largest permanent collections in the United States. An encyclopedic museum, the Art Institute collects, preserves, and interprets works in every medium from all cultures and historical periods. With a collection of approximately 300,000 art works and artifacts, the museum has particularly strong holdings in Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painting, contemporary art, early 20th century European painting and sculpture, Japanese prints, and photography. The museum’s 2009 addition, the Modern Wing, features the latest in green museum technology and 264,000 square feet dedicated to modern and contemporary art, photography, architecture and design, and new museum education facilities. In addition to displaying its permanent collection, the Art Institute mounts more than 30 special exhibitions per year and features lectures, gallery tours, and special performances on a daily basis.


Position Summary

Under supervision of Collections and Exhibitions Manager and Curatorial Chair, organizes and coordinates exhibitions in the Department of Architecture and Design. Utilizes collection management databases to enter and maintain catalogue records and CITI files.  Maintains the study room, storage areas and research materials. In conjunction with Collections and Exhibitions Manager, serves as a liaison between departmental curators, preparators, and support staff, with departments of Conservation, Registration, Imaging, A/V, Physical Plant and other museum departments for all collection and exhibition-related issues. Partners with team to receive and relocate artwork within the building and installs art in all gallery and storage areas. Prepares artwork for shipping to other museums and for exhibitions.

1. Assists the Exhibitions and Collections Manager and Curators in the management of the permanent collection. Develops and maintains departmental accession records. Catalogues objects in the collection. Organizes objects in appropriate storage boxes and vaults. Maintains locations lists and performs data tracking in CITI, AIC’s proprietary collection management database.  

2. Provides access to collection objects and research-related materials as directed by Exhibitions and Collections Manager. Assists scholars’ research. Pages collection objects for researchers with advance appointments, as well as for imaging, exhibitions, conservation, etc. Replaces artworks in home locations when returned from loan or no longer required for study, photography or exhibition.

3. In conjunction with Curators and Exhibitions and Collections Manager, initiates, coordinates and follows through on department-level external relations between lenders and Museum Registration and the Director’s Office, for everything related to the preparation of the installation and de-installation of the exhibition galleries.

4. Maintains and coordinates new acquisitions spreadsheet and photography schedule with the Imaging department.

5. Assists Exhibitions and Collections Manager with preparing a list of accessions for the annual report and thrice-yearly Architecture and Design Committee meetings.

6. Assists curatorial staff with special projects.

7. Labels the collection. With Curators and Exhibitions and Collections Manager, organizes the storage vaults and boxes. Monitors environmental conditions in all exhibition and storage areas and regularly changes and completes hygro reports. Orders supplies for study and storage areas as needed.

8. Matting, mounting, framing and de-framing of artworks.

9. Assists in transporting and installing art in galleries, storage, for thrice-yearly Architecture and Design Committee meetings, etc. Performs gallery and storage checks.

10. Assists with packing and unpacking artwork.

11. Performs other duties as required.




•Bachelor degree required

•Minimum of two years’ museum or gallery installation experience required

•Experience working with basic tools and equipment

•Ability to lift up to 60 pounds comfortably

•Demonstrated proficiency with Excel, Filemaker Pro or other database management software is required. 

•Experience with Google Docs and Calendar is preferred.


The Art Institute of Chicago is an equal opportunity, equal access employer fully committed to achieving a diverse and inclusive workplace

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