Poste: Curator of Image and Art Collections, I Tatti, Florence

Curator of Image and Art Collections, I Tatti, Florence

Agnes Mongan Curator of Image and Art Collections.
I Tatti – The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies.

I Tatti seeks an experienced and collaborative art historian/ archivist/ curator who will provide dynamic leadership in the dual roles of managing and promoting both I Tatti’s historically significant photograph collection and the Center’s distinguished collection of Italian Renaissance paintings and other works of art.

Focusing on paintings and drawings of Renaissance Italy but much broader in scope overall, the Fototeca currently holds some 350,000 analogic prints and other materials, and is transitioning to an increasingly digital environment. The curator will supervise a team of three, including a photograph archivist and two photo catalogers, and will work in close collaboration with the Head Archivist responsible for the library’s historical archives. The art collection (essentially a house museum, with a non-lending policy) comprises nearly 300 works of art, mostly Italian panel paintings from the 14th to the 16th centuries, but includes nearly fifty Asian sculptures, objects, and scrolls, sculptures ranging from pre-Colombian to Renaissance, Islamic works including illuminated manuscripts, and notable pieces of furniture. It is expected that the curator will devote 80% of their time and attentions to the photograph archive, and 20% to the valorization and care of the art collection. This position reports both to the Director of I Tatti and the Director of the Biblioteca Berenson.

This is a full-time position, with an Italian contract of indeterminate duration. Salary based on qualifications and experience. Applicants who possess the necessary qualifications to work and reside in the European Union will receive preference.

– Develops a vigorous porgram of special projects and/or collaborations, organizing exhibits, workshops and conferences both physical and online.
– Promotes knowledge and awareness of photo materials and of objects in the art collection by creating content for the I Tatti website, and generally participating in the academic life of the Center and of cognate institutions in Florence and elsewhere.
– Collaborates with the library, archive and Digital Humanities in strategic planning and decision making on the development of the visual and other archival collections and on setting priorities for processing and digitizing new and historical collections.
– Provides guidance and oversight for, and may participate in, the ongoing activities of accessioning, rehousing, description, and processing of the photo archive’s print and digital images and collections and the digitization of analog photos.
– Ensures compliance as relevant with local, Harvard Library, and international standards for describing images and special collections materials, and with guidelines for the information management systems currently in use (at present, JSTOR Forum, Alma, ArchivesSpace, Aeon).
– Stays abreast of emerging standards and best practices in metadata, cataloging, and archives and digital asset management, and makes recommendations as relevant for local practices.
– Collaborates with the Digital Humanities group and other metadata specialists in the library on digital projects and data reconciliation and enrichment.
Plans and manages activities related to the conservation of photographs and artworks.
– May serve as a liaison to or member of pertinent committees or working groups of Harvard Library or other partner organizations.
– Participates in training and/or supervising student interns.
Basic qualifications
– Advanced university degree, preferably in art history and with preferred specialization in medieval/early modern Italian art
– 5-10+ years professional experience working with photograph collections and/or artworks in an academic library/archive/museum.
– Demonstrated fluency in English and Italian, with excellent oral and written communication skills.
Additional Qualifications
– Working knowledge of other major European languages highly desirable.
– Master’s degree in art history or library and/or information science from an ALA accredited institution or equivalent with specialization in photographic archives management, or equivalent experience.
– Experience with use of information systems and structured descriptive data for library, archival and special collections resources.
– Familiarity with processes and best practices in the digitization of cultural heritage.
– Experience supervising others.
– Attention to detail and excellent organizational skills.
– Ability to establish priorities, organize diverse activities and complex workflows, meet project deadlines, and solve problems.
– Ability to work independently and collaboratively.
– Record of engagement with professional organizations and activities and/or contributions to professional or scholarly literature.
– Commitment to updating skills as required to perform job duties.

Applicants should provide a cover letter, a resume, and the names and contact information of least three referees.

To submit an application, please visit the posting on the I Tatti website here: Applications will be accepted until the end of the day on June 9, 2023.

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