The National Gallery of Ireland (‘Gallery’) is Ireland’s major national cultural institution devoted to the collection and care of fine art. Comprising some 16,000 paintings, drawings, watercolours, miniatures, prints, sculpture and decorative arts, the institution’s extensive holdings include masterpieces by many of the most celebrated figures in the history of western European art. In addition, the Gallery houses the most representative collection of historic Irish art. Funded mainly by the State, the Gallery employs more than 140 staff and provides free access to the public 361 days a year. In 2021, the Gallery was a finalist in two categories of the Digital Media Awards – Best in Government & Not for Profit for ‘National Gallery at Home’, and Best Podcast.
Established in 1964 the Conservation Department at the National Gallery of Ireland promotes and develops research and conservation projects through interdisciplinary cooperation with conservation institutes and museums in Ireland and internationally, as well as sharing skills and developing innovative conservation practises and processes.
As part of the Getty Foundation’s Conserving Canvas initiative, Conserving Canvas (Getty Foundation) ,the National Gallery of Ireland Conservation Department is offering a one year fixed term contract position for a Junior Conservator with specific interest, experience and expertise on structural treatments of artworks on textile support.
The position offers a unique opportunity to advance conservation knowledge and hands-on skills practice and process by focusing on two artworks on textile support from different historical and technical backgrounds: an oil on canvas by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, “Guercino” (1591-1666), and two collages on textile support by Juan Gris (1887 -1927). The junior conservator will work in close collaboration with and under the supervision of the Gallery’s senior conservators and Head of Conservation. He/She will attend seminars and workshops held at the National Gallery of Ireland in collaboration with guest senior conservators from some of the most renowned European conservation institutes.
The Gallery aims to enhance international conservation education in both ethical awareness and technical practice to ensure that critical conservation skills needed for care of works on textile support do not disappear. Reporting to the Head of Conservation or nominated deputy, the Junior Conservator will support and assist with the following duties:
- Carrying out structural conservation treatments on selected works on canvas from the Gallery’s collections such as consolidation and repair – lining – de-ling and re-ling
- Carrying out traditional and advanced tensioning processes on textile support on works from the Gallery’s collections
- Carrying out comparative analyses on structural conservation treatments in the Gallery’s collection of works on textile support.
- Carrying out scientific analysis and develop further collaboration with technical analysts and scientists
- Developing research and test series on traditional and modern structural treatment techniques
- Identify risks and deterioration of works on textile support and refine preventative measures.
In addition the junior conservator will:
- Survey selected works on textile support from the Gallery’s collections
- Convey scientific and technical information to the conservation and scientific communities, and disseminate scientific research to non-technical audiences
- Provide and up-date conservation documentation on all treatments undertaken
- Creating and developing the project’s data cataloguing platform and contribute to the curation of the Gallery’s publication on the project’s research and treatments
- Support the Conservation Department in creating further educational resources for dissemination, such as getting involved in the creation of online project content and organising project study days and workshops
- Giving talks and lectures, contributing to articles for publication and the Gallery’s programming in audience engagement
The successful candidate will have:
- A recognised qualification in Painting Conservation
- Conservation experience, preferably in a museum environment
- Familiarity with traditional and/or modern structural conservation techniques of works with textile support
- Proven research and analytical skills and attention to detail
- An ability to work on own initiative while being part of an effective team
- A positive approach to working in the Gallery and demonstrated enthusiasm towards raising awareness about the preservation and conservation activities in a Conservation Department
- A keen interest in working with a range of different museum professionals and collaborating with fellow conservators and colleagues
- Proficiency in MS Office packages and databases
Note: This job description is a guide to broad areas of development and should not be regarded as a comprehensive listing. All employees are required to be compliant with the Gallery screening and security procedures.
Candidates must be eligible to work in Ireland.
Salary: Salary is fixed at €33,000 gross per annum for the duration of the contract. Candidates should note the National Gallery of Ireland complies with Department of Public Expenditure and Reform regulations and guidelines on Public Service pay and conditions of employment.
Duration: 1 year fixed term contract
Working hours: Full time, 5 days a week – 35 hours per week (net of breaks). This position is fully onsite.
Closing date for receipt of applications: 20 July 2022
Interviews will be held in August 2022
How to apply: Please upload a cover letter and curriculum vitae. Candidates should note that panels may be formed from which future positions may be filled.
Candidates are required to submit a portfolio with four examples of documented research and structural conservation treatments of works on textile support in PDF Format.
The Junior Conservator position is funded by a grant from
the Getty Foundation
The National Gallery of Ireland is an equal opportunities employer