Lowe Art Museum Begins Search for Director

MANAGEMENT CONSULTANTS FOR THE ARTS, INC.

Len Alexander × Diane Frankel × Gregory Kandel × Louise Kane × David Mallette × Linda Sweet

                                                                                                         DECEMBER 2013

 

JOB DESCRIPTION

DIRECTOR

LOWE ART MUSEUM

UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI

CORAL GABLES, FLORIDA

 

 

BACKGROUND:

From its origins in three classrooms in 1950, the Lowe Art Museum has demonstrated a commitment to serve the University of Miami as a teaching resource, and the residents of and visitors to greater Miami as its premiere general art museum. With the founding gift in 1950 by philanthropists Joe and Emily Lowe, a free-standing museum facility opened to the public in 1952. It was the first art museum in South Florida and remains the largest collecting art museum in the region. The almost 19,000-object collection, one of the most important in the southeast, has particular strengths in Renaissance and Baroque, Ancient Americas, Native American, African, and Asian Art. Growing collection areas include the art of the Ancient Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Egypt and the Near East, the Pacific Islands, and the modern and contemporary art of the Americas and the Caribbean. Of particular note is the Lowe’s commitment to Contemporary Glass and Studio Arts, which includes a growing collection of glass and ceramics exhibited in a dedicated gallery space.   The museum also oversees the public sculpture collection of approximately 30 works installed throughout the University of Miami campus in Coral Gables.

The Lowe was accredited by the AAM in 1972, and was reaccredited most recently in 2012. Also in 1987, the Lowe was designated a “Major Cultural Institution” by the State of Florida. The Director of the Lowe has been a member of AAMD since 1990. The museum operates with a budget of approximately $2 million, a staff of 16 and an 85 member docent group. It is an academic unit of the College of Arts and Sciences, governed by the Board of Trustees of the University of Miami.

For further information about the Lowe Art Museum and the University of Miami go to the following web sites: 
www.lowemuseum.org
www.miami.edu/

 

OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES:

  • Develop an exciting strategic plan for the museum with emphasis on strengthening its role on campus and in the community.
  • Build a constituency among collectors, leaders and donors in South Florida to create excitement for the museum’s programs and enhance the scope of philanthropic and community support. 
  • Work with the Lowe’s major support group, Beaux Arts, to strengthen its role as a fund raising arm of the museum.
  • Work with the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences to position the museum on campus as a center of academic and student life, broadening the museum’s collaborative relationships with other departments and schools; and work with the Academic Advisory Council to clarify its role in this effort.
  • Enhance the regional and national reputation and stature of the museum and build collaborative relationships with museums locally and across the country as well as globally.

 

RESPONSIBILITIES:

The Director of the Lowe Art Museum, reporting to the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, sets the museum’s artistic direction and oversees its operations. Responsibilities include financial and personnel management, oversight of exhibitions, programs and fund-raising, maintaining a close working relationship with the university administration and faculty and with all groups supporting the museum. Specific responsibilities include the ability to:

  • Serve as the liaison between the Lowe Art Museum in its official business with the university and the community.
  • Clearly articulate the role of the museum as a university and community resource assuring its active engagement with all current and future constituencies.
  • Provide the vision and artistic direction for the museum by taking the lead in shaping the museum’s role in the visual arts and across disciplines on the campus and in the region.
  • Increase philanthropic support for the museum by energetically working with the Dean, Beaux Arts, and the museum and university development offices.
  • Plan strategies and initiatives necessary to fulfill the museum’s mission and ensure its financial stability and growth.
  • Develop, with curatorial, education and other staff including faculty, significant exhibitions and public programs with an emphasis on innovative approaches to utilizing the museum’s rich and diverse collections with appeal to both the university and community.
  • Assure staff morale and productivity by working across departments and by setting and maintaining high professional standards for the museum in all areas.
  • Develop, oversee and implement the museum’s annual budget and its short and long-term strategic plans.
  • Build relationships and make the museum a cultural center and hub for intellectual discourse on campus and in the community.
  • Enhance the relationship and the role of Beaux Art and of the Academic Advisory Councilby establishing clear policies and procedures and specific responsibilities for each.
  • Establish and maintain relationships with all of the museum’s stakeholders including students, faculty, administrators, trustees, collectors, alumni, donors, parents, and local, state and national legislators.

 

QUALIFICATIONS:

The ideal candidate should have:

  • A master’s or doctoral degree in an appropriate discipline or equivalent combination of education and experience;
  • An intellectually rigorous approach to planning and executing exhibitions and educational programs;
  • Strong leadership skills;
  • Prior management in an art museum known for quality and excellence, experience at an academic museum is desirable;
  • Demonstrated success in fundraising
  • Competence and hands-on experience handling budgets, establishing priorities, managing operations and directing and supporting staff;
  • Knowledge of how a large, complex organization, in this instance a university, works and the ability to navigate through one;
  • Proven ability to build and nurture relationships with a wide range of individuals both internally within the university and externally in the greater Miami community as well as nationally;
  • Demonstrated ability to serve as an effective spokesperson and ambassador for the museum and university with excellent written and oral communication skills.

 

COMPENSATION: 

The salary is negotiable and competitive. The University benefit package is excellent.

 

START DATE:

The position will be filled by late spring/early summer 2014.

 

PROCEDURE FOR APPLICATION:

Submit a resume and one-page narrative electronically describing your interest in the position and the experience you have had which relates to the responsibilities described.  Applications will be reviewed in strict confidence by Management Consultants for the Arts, an executive search firm working with the Dean of Arts and Sciences and the search committee:

Send applications to: 

Linda Sweet, Partner, Management Consultants for the Arts, Inc.                   

Attention: Christy Wall at MCAWall2@gmail.com

January 14, 2014