Duke University Job Description:


Job Code: 0574 


Job Level: 10 

Revised Date: 07/10/2017  

Job Family: JF 16 

Occupational Summary

Handle and care for works of art owned, on loan to, and exhibited by the Nasher Museum of Art. Perform a variety of specialized tasks in the design and construction of display cases, vitrines, mounts, crates and furniture for exhibitions, galleries and museum store. Oversee work of other art handlers.

Work Performed

Reports to the Exhibition Designer. Works closely with and may receive work direction from curators and registrars. Supervises temporary art handlers.

Coordinate with curators and exhibition designers to design and construct display cases for permanent collections and special exhibitions. Perform highly specialized technical tasks relating to lighting, rigging, mounting, displaying and labeling art objects.

Design and construct cabinets and other specialized furniture for museum needs. Design and construct specialized, custom built mounts for individual works of art, pottery, small stone sculpture, wooden masks, jade pendants, and other items, custom fitting to ensure the safety and security of the artwork. Design and construct mounts for large-scale stained glass pieces and large scale (indoor and outdoor) sculpture, both full figures and fragments; analyze each piece and design mounts to ensure an aesthetically pleasing yet safe system of display. Build plexiglass vitrines for custom built cases. Upholster risers/stands and the interior of vitrines with fabric for the display of works of art. Build and finish Nasher standard wood frames, oversized frames for works on paper and specialized Repair picture frames as needed. Design and hang full length scrolls for gallery spaces.

Design, construct and maintain multi-media components of exhibition including listening and video stations and interactive technologies.

Design, construct and maintain lighting solutions for display of art and navigation throughout gallery spaces.

Initiate inquiries to vendors, both nationally and locally, to obtain specialized materials, equipment and tools of the best quality at the most reasonable price.

Coordinate with the Registrar, Curators, Art Museum Technician and others as appropriate in the safe movement and installation of artwork for traveling exhibitions, the permanent collection, and other Duke locations. Perform biweekly walk through of all gallery spaces to identify and correct any lighting outages, clean or repaint wall blemishes, and repair label and signage problems.

Hire and supervise specialized temporary labor needed for exhibitions and any other projects requiring art handling experience. Direct the uncrating and crating of incoming/outgoing art shipments. Build or modify crates with proper cushioning for objects for domestic and international shipment. Use or reuse various packing materials to pack art work for safe shipping. Safely unpack objects, saving materials for possible reuse.

Coordinate with other Nasher Departments and the Duke University Stores to design, fabricate, layout and install vinyl and other signage for exhibition wall text, visitor instruction, and labels for individual works of art.

Assist in the digitization of the Nasher Collection by providing art handling services to Collection Photographer.

Working with Curators and Academic Programs, provide temporary access to art items in secure storage. This includes preparing materials for view and overseeing visitors to ensure proper handling of a variety of media (works on paper, painting, and objects).

Perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.

Required Qualifications at this Level


Requires college-level coursework in studio art, art history or related field. B.A. in art-related field preferred.



Minimum of three years closely related experience that includes the regular handling and packing of works of art and finished cabinetry work, or equivalent combination of education and experience. Knowledge of and/or experience with archival and conservation procedures and materials.





The intent of this job description is to provide a representative and level of the types of duties and responsibilities that will be required of positions given this title and shall not be construed as a declaration of the total of the specific duties and responsibilities of any particular position. Employees may be directed to perform job-related tasks other than those specifically presented in this description.

Duke University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual's age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

Duke aspires to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas-an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values.

Essential Physical Job Functions

Certain jobs at Duke University and Duke University Health System may include essential job functions that require specific physical and/or mental abilities. Additional information and provision for requests for reasonable accommodation will be provided by each hiring department.