Objects Conservator / Museum Conservator

Title: Objects Conservator / Museum Conservator
Reports to: Director of Collections & Exhibitions
Status: Full time


The Museum seeks a skilled, team-oriented, and experienced Objects Conservator to oversee assessments, treatments, and overall collections care for the Birmingham Museum of Art (BMA) in Birmingham, Alabama. This person will have professional conservation duties related to the examination, treatment, exhibition, handling, and storing of primarily three-dimensional works of art, including decorative arts and sculpture. A working knowledge of basic treatment techniques for paintings, works on paper, photography, and multimedia is a plus.

The ideal candidate will be excited to collaborate with regional and national conservation teams and have the skills to build partnerships. This colleague should place a great value on the understanding of the BMA’s collection as well as its preservation and presentation.

Specific duties include:


  • Prepare museum collections and objects for storage, research, or exhibition.
  • Document conservation research and treatments with written commentary and photographs, and enter them into the BMA collections management database (TMS).
  • Work with the Collections & Exhibitions team to share condition reporting for works coming in on loan, going out on loan, exhibition objects, and new acquisitions.
  • Contract knowledgeably with consultants and conservators for services outside of the Museum Conservator’s area of expertise.
  • Coordinate with museum colleagues to determine project budgets and adhere to a Conservation Department budget.

Additional duties include:

  • Manage the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program for the collections, act as point-person for questions regarding flora allowed in the museum.
  • Help maintain a collection-sensitive environment, by advising as part of a team on standards to mitigate risks such as decibel levels, lighting, plantlife, and proximity to works of art.
  • Serve on the Museum’s Emergency Preparedness Team.
  • Travel to courier collection works and serve as a tour conservator for traveling exhibitions, as needed.
  • Order supplies for the Conservation Lab, and other special projects.
  • Adhere to ethical standards practiced in museums (AAM & AIC).
  • Participate in professional organizations and other professional development to remain current of advances in research and treatment of three-dimensional objects.
  • Acts as a liaison, sharing conservation knowledge and expertise with internal staff and the general public.
  • Supervise and mentor fellows, interns, and paid staff as needed.
  • Other activities as required to meet the mission of the Museum.


  • M.A. in conservation from a recognized college or university, or Certificate from a recognized Conservation Training Program.
  • At least three years of post-degree conservation experience preferred, either in a museum setting or private practice.
  • Demonstrable knowledge of the technology and materials of three-dimensional art and artifacts and of the procedures relating to their examination, preventative, and corrective treatments, and a record of successful treatments.
  • Knowledge of varied materials and ability to advise on collections care and treatment strategies generally.
  • Knowledge of the environmental requirements and controls for handling, storage, and exhibition of three-dimensional objects, as well as general requirements for paintings, works on paper, sculpture, photography, and organic and inorganic materials.
  • Resourcefulness with creative problem solving skills, a thoughtful decision maker, the ability to work with deadlines, and prioritize workflow.
  • Strong record of supporting a collaborative work environment with colleagues.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and respect for cultural differences and knowledge of DEAI practices, and other culturally specific guidelines and invested in building a diverse working environment and inclusion in all aspects of work.
  • Experience with contract conservators, a plus.
  • Knowledge of The Museum System database (TMS) is preferred.

About the Museum

Founded in 1951, the Birmingham Museum of Art is deeply invested in education and engagement and serves as a resource for communities locally, nationally, and internationally. It houses one of the finest collections in the Southeast of the United States. Nearly 29,000 objects displayed and housed within the Museum represent a rich panorama of cultures, including those from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe including work by both Pre-Columbian and Native North American artists. Highlights include the Museum’s collection of the arts of Asia, Vietnamese ceramics, the Kress collection of Renaissance and Baroque paintings, sculpture, and decorative arts from the late 13th century to the 1750s, and the Museum’s world-renowned collection of Wedgwood, the largest outside of England.


The Objects Conservator / Museum Conservator position is part of the City of Birmingham / Personnel Board of Jefferson County civil service system (Merit System). The position is a grade 24 on the City of Birmingham’s salary schedule and will include merit increase consideration each year.  The position includes an excellent benefits package, including a competitive retirement plan.

To apply

Please submit a letter of interest; curriculum vitae; names, addresses, and phone numbers of three references; and a writing sample.

Apply Now

Equal Opportunity Employer
It is the policy of the Birmingham Museum of Art (BMA) to provide equal employment opportunity to all applicants for employment with the BMA and to BMA staff without regard to sex, race, color, religious belief, national origin, disability, age, or veteran status. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including but not limited to, hiring, placement, promotions, termination, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

Commitment to Diversity
The Birmingham Museum of Art is committed to providing an environment that is free from discrimination. The BMA is a diverse community in terms of race and ethnicity, culture, religion, personal values and traditions. BMA values this diversity recognizing that our differences contribute to our strength as an agency serving a diverse population. It is to this end that the BMA is committed to non-discrimination and advocates for an environment of tolerance with regard to cultural and personal differences. It is our belief that every employee has the right to be treated with dignity, respect, and self-worth and that it is in our best interest as an agency serving the public good to act in a manner free of bias, exclusion, and discrimination whether on the basis of faith, race, gender, culture, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, political affiliation, or any other personal differences.