We're Hiring: Gallery Operations Specialist (Collections, Exhibitions and Facility)

Closing Date: May 13, 2024 at 11:59pm EST

A university-based, public art gallery since 1942, McIntosh Gallery collaborates with artists, curators and academics to develop innovative strategies to interpret and disseminate visual culture. Exhibitions, educational programs and special events provide a platform for engagement with visual art and artists. McIntosh Gallery acknowledges the support of the Government of Canada Department of Canadian Heritage, the Canada Council for the Arts through its Engage and Sustain Program, the Ontario Arts Council, Western University, Foundation Western, and our generous donors.

The Gallery Operations Specialist (Collections, Exhibitions and Facility) is a multi-functional role with a wide range of key responsibilities that support and enable the McIntosh Gallery’s artistic, research, community, and business activities to succeed and function smoothly. Working closely with all members of the gallery team, this role is responsible for overall management, preservation, documentation, storage, organization, analysis, ethical care and maintenance of the permanent collection. The role facilitates the development, expansion, and implementation of the ArtShare program and manages the planning and implementation of exhibitions and curatorial projects on site, across campus, in community, and touring. The role coordinates facilities, furniture, and equipment requirements, monitors and tracks environmental trends and other requirements necessary to ensure Category A status is maintained, and liaises regularly with University units and departments related to facilities, security, technology, etc., as required. This role acts as an ambassador for the McIntosh Gallery at all levels of interdepartmental and public engagement.

Key Accountabilities


  • Working collaboratively with the curatorial team:
    • Supports the development and implementation of a comprehensive collection audit to identify gaps, strengths, challenges, and opportunities for growth. The audit will inform the realignment of McIntosh’s collection focus, policies, and procedures.
    • Determines and directs collections care priorities, practices, and standards, and is a key contributor to the institutional strategic planning and policy reviews related to these areas.
    • Contributes to institutional planning and assessment of future collections storage needs.
    • Recommends priorities in conservation.
    • Supports Canadian Cultural Properties Export Review Board applications.
  • Works on a full range of collections activities including processing acquisitions, deaccessions, exhibitions, loans, preservation, repatriations, storage, re-housing, access and documentation
  • Conducts data management including cataloging and maintaining collections records (data, photos, and the public digital interface).
  • Researches provenance, copyright, reproduction rights, and ensures all legal obligations are met.
  • Ensures safe and secure storage for the permanent collection and other works in the gallery’s care including managing and maintaining offsite storage facilities; Prepares regular condition reporting and implementation of required action.
  • Monitors climatic/environmental conditions in exhibition and storage areas and where artwork from the collection is exhibited and troubleshoots issues as required.
  • Conducts a regular inventory of the collection including art and sculptures placed in various locations across campus.
  • Ensures all work in the collections is properly photographed for a variety of applications including insurance, publication, research, and on-line access.
  • Writes and processes condition reports of work in the collection and work entering and leaving the gallery for temporary exhibitions.
  • Maintains and updates insurance records.
  • Assesses ability of works to travel; Determines packaging requirements and special handling procedures.
  • Oversees the organization and maintenance of collections spaces, workroom areas, and exhibition spaces in compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario.
  • Participates in building and leveraging relationships with artists, collectors, donors, and other key stakeholders.
  • Provides technical and collections support for research enquiries and projects.
  • Provides physical access to the collection and facilitates online global access.
  • Supports the development and delivery of collection tours, work studies, and research (students, faculty, curators, scholars - internal and external).
  • Ensures collection emergency kit and procedures are current, complete, and that relevant staff are trained in its application.


  • Leads the overall management and implementation of the ArtShare program which includes but is not limited to:
    • Consulting with faculty and administrative offices for the selection, placement, and installation of art from the McIntosh collection in a wide variety of campus locations.
    • Reviewing, growing, and developing new opportunities for the ArtShare program with a goal to expand engagement and increase revenue.
    • Developing a strategy to address the back log of university departments requesting inclusion in the program.
    • Conducting regular inventory, tracking, and condition reporting.
    • Assessing and identifying work from the collection that is appropriate for inclusion in the program.
    • Tracking and providing required information for billing.
  • Working collaboratively with ArtShare clients, the curatorial team, students and volunteers, develops strategies to activate the art and engage university departments with the art in their space.


  • Works with the curatorial team, visiting artists, and curators of diverse backgrounds and cultural contexts to understand and support all aspects related to the logistics, design, layout, and feasibility of all exhibitions, installations, and projects undertaken by the gallery.
  • Coordinates exhibition production including but not limited to shipping and receiving of artwork.
  • Works closely with curators and artists in the production of Google SketchUp exhibition design plans to facilitate exhibition development and installation.
  • Manages all operations and logistics of touring exhibitions and artworks on loan (incoming and outgoing) including but not limited to: 
    • Contacting prospective venues for exhibition tours detailing critical details such as Standard Facility Reports, environmental charts, policies and procedures, and floor plans.
    • Assists with obtaining required insurance documentation.
    • Distributes and tracks tour prospectuses, object lists, crate lists, packaging lists and condition reports.
    • Uses SketchUp software to adapt floor plans when appropriate.
    • Coordinate active touring content for the website and social media.
    • Maintains organized records of all exhibitions (touring and inhouse)
    • Manages exhibition loans.
    • Organization of tour schedules
    • Liaises with host venues and coordinates tour schedule.
    • Packing and shipping requirements.
    • Documentation
    • Supports venue research and requirements and all logistics related to McIntosh developed exhibitions.
  • Supports and facilitates partnerships with other galleries and university departments.
  • Develops and monitors project management timelines, schedules (long and short view) and workflow to ensure all specialized equipment and installation requirements are identified and dealt with in advance ensuring smooth and timely changeovers.
  • Leads regular planning and production meetings with all relevant stakeholders, including artists, technicians, curators, and gallery staff to determine the scope of preparation and the implementation of all in-house and off-site projects.


  • Responsible for all aspects of exhibition preparation, including installation and de-installation of in-house, travelling and off-site exhibitions; construction of museum standard displays and crating solutions.
  • Provides advice and creative solutions to support curators and artists in achieving their artistic goals.
  • Liaises with and supervises relevant service providers as required (painters, builders, technology professionals, conservators, contract preparators, etc.) as it relates to the design and installation of exhibitions.
  • Performs basic framing and matting of art work from the permanent collection.
  • Oversees and installs a full range of artistic presentations of historical, contemporary, and new media art including but not limited to:
    • Painting and repairing of exhibition walls and display’s
    • Display construction
    • Technological requirements
    • Art handling and packing
    • Application of lettering, signage, and labels.
  • Ensures maintenance and organization of workshop and storage areas.
  • Stays current on the range of sensitivities and requirements related to the display of a wide variety of art work and mediums.
  • Remains current on all new media art practices and technology as well as contemporary and historical installation strategies.
  • Manages the coordination and movement of art inside and outside the gallery.
  • Packages and crates work for safe shipment including specialized crate and packing solutions as required.
  • Moves objects including pedestals, crates, ladders, art, etc.
  • Trains and oversees contract preparators and/or student interns.


  • In collaboration with University units/departments (e.g. facilities), monitors and ensures that the environmental and facility standards as set by the Canadian Conservation Institute are maintained.
  • Ensures the McIntosh Facility Report remains current.
  • Develops and implements a pest management program.
  • Creates environmental trend reports as required.
  • In collaboration with the relevant university contact, ensures the health and safety responsibilities of the McIntosh are maintained.
  • Coordinates and oversees various trades that fall within the McIntosh’s responsibility (painters, wall construction, etc.).
  • Acts as the point of contact for university facility workers and contractors.
  • Working with the relevant university department and the curatorial team, develops and implements the Emergency Response Plan and Facility Report.
  • In collaboration with all staff, coordinates use of facility to ensure appropriateness of activity and that there is no conflict in scheduling.
  • Coordinates and/or sets up for lectures, films, meetings, opening receptions, and other internal events.
  • Ensures staff and volunteers are given instruction for daily opening and closing of exhibitions and all required security protocols.
  • Works with the curatorial team to ensure facility meets all requirements for the safe care of collections and all art work on site.
  • Identifies and monitors issues as they arise and implements solutions and/or contacts relevant individuals.
  • Oversees facility requirements (i.e. security protocols, pest management, AODA requirements, etc.).


  • In collaboration relevant university departments, develops and implements appropriate policies and procedures to ensure the safe guarding of all assets under the control and care of the gallery.
  • Monitors internal camera security system and responds to situations as they arise in collaboration with Campus Safety and Emergency Services.

Health & Safety:

  • Acts as the lead member of the Joint Health & Safety team, ensures all Health and Safety requirements are met, performs all standard Health and Safety reporting requirements, and ensures day to day activities are carried out with Health and Safety requirements.


  • Supports and contributes to strategic planning, feasibility studies, and business planning activities.
  • Brings pro-active attention to sustainable exhibition production practices toward the reduction of waste and ecological impact, as well the re-use and sharing of resources.
  • Works collaboratively to ensure non-discriminatory processes that enable and provide a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere throughout their own work and all the gallery’s relationships.
  • Develops and manages related budgets including monitoring and reviewing expenditures and patterns of expenses.
  • Maintains the inventory of all gallery furniture, equipment, tools, and installation hardware.
  • Maintains an up-to-date file of suppliers and contractors.
  • Maintains organized files on the installation and technical procedures for each exhibition.
  • Facilitates incoming and outgoing equipment loans to other institutions and departments within the university.
  • Works at multiple sites will be required.



  • Bachelor of Fine Arts or relevant discipline
  • Certificate or Diploma in Collection Management and/or Applied Museum Studies
  • Combined education and experience in a related field will be considered


  • 3 years of art gallery experience working with collections, art handling, exhibition coordination, and installation
  • Experience recruiting, training, and developing a team of gallery technicians and art installers

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities & Attributes

  • A passion for art (contemporary and historical), a love of exhibitions, and inspired by paradigm shifts in the future of museum practice
  • Possesses knowledge of methods of art display materials and techniques and use of related tools and equipment
  • Understanding of the importance of maintaining the integrity of art work throughout the installation and preparatory process, with proven ability to safely handle art objects and display units, with art work shipping and receiving experience
  • Understanding of the lighting requirements of exhibitions in accordance with best practices, Category A standards, as well as curatorial and artistic requirements
  • Familiarity with new media and technologies related to contemporary artistic practices, as well as historical and traditional art practices
  • Current knowledge of latest best practices in conservation, and long-term storage of museum collections and object handling, packing standards and loan processes
  • Current knowledge of collections management systems and data management techniques
  • Building management knowledge and basic carpentry, building, painting, and photography skills
  • Demonstrated interest in staying up to date on latest artistic practices and strategies of display
  • Proven ability to work collaboratively in a team environment with artists, curators, and gallery staff
  • Proven ability to meet tight and multiple deadlines, working simultaneously on multiple projects
  • Project management skills to manage multiple projects simultaneously from conception to completion within tightly prescribed timelines
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills to liaise with both internal and external stakeholders
  • Attention to detail and multi-tasking skills to prioritize and consistently produce high-quality work within deadlines
  • An energetic desire to work with colleagues, artists, volunteers, interns, and community members to create something extraordinary
  • Troubleshooting ability with technology and AV equipment used in exhibitions and in equipment inventory
  • Intermediate computer skills in Microsoft Office, Google Sketchup, and Adobe Suite
  • Ability to be flexible, embrace change, and consider diverse points of view
  • Ability to apply creativity, innovation and resourcefulness to daily work
  • Excellent judgement and initiative; organization, interpersonal and oral and written communication skills
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a team as well as with individuals of diverse ages, identities, and backgrounds
  • Ability to work within a flexible schedule to accommodate the gallery’s events and activities as determined by project and organizational need
  • Must have own transportation with ability to travel between multiple sites; Valid Class G driver’s license required
  • Ability to lift approximately 40 lbs using proper ergonomic procedures and related equipment

Background Checks
Please note, successful applicants will be required to produce a current, clean driving abstract prior to commencing employment.

Western Values Diversity
The University invites applications from all qualified individuals. Western is committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcomes applications from women, members of racialized groups/visible minorities, Indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, persons of any sexual orientation, and persons of any gender identity or gender expression.

Accommodations are available for applicants with disabilities throughout the recruitment process. If you require accommodations for interviews or other meetings, please contact Human Resources or phone 519-661-2194.

To Apply
Interested candidates can apply online through Working at Western via recruit.uwo.ca. Job ID: 34709

Please Note: We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only those chosen for an interview will be contacted.