Collections Manager/Associate Preparator – Muskegon Museum of Art

The Muskegon Museum of Art (MMA) seeks a full-time Collections Manager/Associate Preparator with proven experience in museum collections management in a manner consistent with the highest standards as recommended by American Alliance of Museums (AAM) with all applicable laws and regulations pertaining to collections and collecting activities. The position reports to the Director of Collections and Exhibitions, serves on the exhibition development team, and is the lead staff member responsible for proper care and handling of the fine art collection.



  1. Prepares, maintains, and updates all data for the approximately 5,000 MMA Permanent Collection objects in Microsoft Access, hard copy files, and ledgers. Oversees all cataloguing for accessioning/deaccessioning objects.
  2. Facilitates/documents all long and short-term loans to/from the museum, including working with lenders, maintaining insurance, and filing condition reports. Maintains records of all loans and past, current, and future exhibitions.
  3. Maintains storage of the permanent collection and loans. Tracks the movement of all artworks and updates locations in the computer database.
  4. Serves as primary contact for rights and reproductions, copyright, and Fair Use issues. Works with photographers to document the permanent collection. Creates and stores digital photos of the permanent collection and, as needed, loans and exhibitions.
  5. Works with the Preparator to arrange for the crating and transportation of objects from the permanent collection, loans, and exhibitions. Works with outside vendors to arrange for incoming/outgoing shipping, both domestically/internationally.
  6. Works with Executive Director and Director of Collections and Exhibitions to develop and implement policies/procedures for governing the permanent collection, emergency planning, security procedures, and other museum functions as needed.
  7. With the Executive Director and Director of Collections and Exhibitions, prepares agendas, art, and documentation for the Collections Committee and the MMA Foundation Board of Trustees.
  8. Works with appraisers to maintain current values for the Permanent Collection and the insurance company to ensure protection of the collection and all loans and exhibitions.
  9. Tracks the condition of permanent collection objects and coordinates conservation efforts with the Director of Collections and Exhibitions and Preparator. Works with outside conservators when required.
  10. Oversees auction and sales activity for non-accessioned and deaccessioned objects.
  11. Maintains/monitors HVAC system and gallery checklists.
  12. Assists with permanent collection research.


  1. Assists Director of Collections and Exhibitions and Preparator in exhibition planning/design.
  2. Prepares labels and didactics for display and assists with mounting and installation.
  3. Assists with art movement, installation, and exhibition lighting.
  4. Assists with framing, matting, and mounting of art for display.
  5. Assists with basic conservation.
  1. Serves as primary supervisor of intern program. Coordinates intern training and duties with other staff. Works with intern advisors from area universities, colleges, and schools.


The person holding this position is a critical member of a small team responsible for planning and installing 10-14 exhibitions annually. Fine art knowledge and experience are essential.

At a minimum, the candidate will possess two years of prior museum/gallery experience in registrarial and/or curatorial departments.  (Candidates with MA or MFA degrees in fine arts, museum studies, art history, or related fields are also eligible under this requirement, but must have some prior collections management experience) Expertise with computers including collections management software is required.  Candidates must have experience in handling and installing art.  A proven ability to work within a team setting and interact with museum guests, volunteers, and donors is essential.

Certain physical activities are required:   

  • Must be able to climb a 12’ ladder and reach both arms above the head
  • Must be able to lift and carry a minimum of 40 lbs. without assistance.
  • Must have a basic familiarity with hand tools.


  • Two to five years of successful team experience in a museum, fine arts, or studio environment;
  • Four (4) years of college, including related college course work in art history, museum studies, and/or fine arts.\
  • Graduate work in related field a strong plus.

A job description may be found on the MMA website:

To have a copy of the job description emailed to you, please call 231-720-2571.

Please send letter of application and a complete resume with references to Kirk Hallman, Executive Director, Muskegon Museum of Art, 296 W. Webster Ave., Muskegon MI 49440. Application materials as requested may also be emailed to

Deadline to apply:  March 30, 2018

Posted on the MMA website 2/26.

 The Michigan Museums Association is supported in part by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Michigan Museums Association       313-334-7643       PO Box 5246, Cheboygan, MI 49721

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