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Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
San Francisco, CA, United States
4 days ago
Harvard Library
Cambridge, MA, United States
18 days ago
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
San Francisco, California, United States
4 days ago


The Head of Paper Conservation supervises the day-to-day operation of the Paper Conservation Department.  In this capacity, they are responsible for departmental activities related to the preservation and conservation of prints, drawings, photographs, and books for two museums that host multiple exhibitions per year displaying works on paper, and house a permanent collection of more than 100,000 prints, drawings, photographs, and books. This role also provides general conservation support for the Legion of Honor. The Head of Paper Conservation plays an active role in FAMSF's ongoing efforts to be an equitable, inclusive, and welcoming environment for a diverse staff and public.

Typical Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Departmental operation and supervision. Is responsible for the efficient operation of the Paper Conservation studio, working closely with the Curatorial and Exhibitions departments to set paper conservation priorities and to schedule treatment work.  Supervises the Paper Conservation Department staff, including all interns and fellows, and oversees all paper treatment projects.
  2. Examination and Documentation Supervises and provides documentation of structure and condition through written reports and photographic documentation. Provides technical information for labels, publication, and authentication. Conducts research into materials and their properties, history of fabrication, and artists' methods.
  3. Conservation treatment. Conducts highly skilled treatment of art on paper (prints, drawings, photographs and books) in adherence with the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the American Institute for Conservation.
  4. Loan processing and Exhibitions work. Evaluates potential loans and exhibitions with regard to treatment needs, environmental specifications and other special requirements. Oversees installations as needed, including those of specialized works on paper, such as books and contemporary artworks. Collaborates on the design of display mounts.
  5. Supervises the processing of incoming and outgoing loans. Undertakes condition reporting for incoming, outgoing and traveling exhibitions. Assigns and performs courier duties as necessary.
  6. Preventive Conservation. Ensures that best practices for preventive conservation are implemented in exhibition, storage, and transit. Provides guidance on the design of housing and storage for works on paper, and on environmental and pest control issues.
  7. Outreach. Responds to inquiries from colleagues, scholars, and the general public. Conducts tours and gives lectures. Publishes in conservation forums and provides content for exhibitions and web. 
  8. Professional engagement. Keeps informed of current techniques and research, contributes to the field of conservation, and maintains a professional network that is used to further the work of the institution.
  9. Departmental Operation. Responsible for all aspects of laboratory safety and upkeep.
  10. Budget management. Prepares the annual budget for the upcoming fiscal year in collaboration with the Director of Conservation and Finance Department.


Minimum Qualifications:

Education and training: Master's Degree in Art Conservation or equivalent experience with a specialization in works on paper.

Work Experience: At least ten years of post-graduate museum experience.

Skills and Abilities:

  • Proficient in mentoring conservation staff, interns, and fellows and in teaching the fundamentals of conservation.
  • Expert knowledge of conservation methods, techniques, and procedures involved in the maintenance and care of a museum collection of works of art on paper.
  • Advanced knowledge of artists' fabrication techniques of prints, drawings,
  • photographs, and books
  • Advanced understanding of properties of art conservation materials and equipment, including analytical equipment used in paper conservation.
  • General knowledge of art history related to prints, drawings, photographs, and books from all periods.
  • General knowledge of chemistry as it applies to art conservation and, specifically, knowledge of materials science and deterioration processes of prints, drawings, photographs, and books.
  • Highly skilled in performing a wide variety of conservation procedures with manual dexterity and sensitivity to materials.
  • Highly experienced in exhibitions conservation. Ability to develop innovative solutions for the treatment and installation of new and challenging media.
  • Ability to develop and manage project budgets and timelines.
  • Experience in planning and implementation of preventive conservation measures.
  • Knowledge of emergency preparedness and emergency response.
  • Excellent research capabilities.
  • Effective communication skills, verbally and in writing.
  • Concern for accuracy and efficient organization.
  • Mature judgment and excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Full knowledge of digital imaging techniques.
  • Strong computer skills and knowledge of collections management software.


The benefits package includes medical, dental, vision and 401(k), and paid time off. 

Application Deadline: Open until filled 

If you require an alternative method of completing this application please contact

All new COFAM employees are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Please contact with any questions.

Job Information

  • Job ID: 65069513
  • Location:
    San Francisco, California, United States
  • Position Title: Head of Paper Conservation
  • Company Name For Job: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
  • Job Function: Books and Paper
  • Job Type: Full-Time
  • Job Duration: Indefinite
  • Min Education: BA/BS/Undergraduate
  • Min Experience: Over 10 Years
  • Required Travel: 0-10%

Please refer to the company's website or job descriptions to learn more about them.

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