7 days ago
  • Level Senior
  • Professions Event Manager, Event Coordinator
  • Type Full Time
  • Location London, United Kingdom


Deadline: 24/02/2019 23:59
Senior Exhibitions Manager (fixed-term contract providing maternity cover for approximately 12 months). This position is subject to Enhanced DBS and 5 year reference checks.
About the Royal Academy of Arts
The Royal Academy of Arts is one of the UK’s foremost arts institutions, famous for its programme of temporary exhibitions. Dedicated to promoting the creation, study and enjoyment of art to all audiences it is led by eminent artists and architects, and unique in having practitioners at its very core.
We are an innovative and forward-looking organisation, yet we’re also immensely proud and respectful of our two and a half centuries of heritage. Our mission is to be a clear, strong voice for art and artists and we are leaders in the exhibition, creation and debate of the visual arts.
About this position
The Exhibitions Department organises the RA’s world renowned programme of eight to ten temporary exhibitions each year. Drawn from public and private collections, the programme is often organised in partnership with leading museums internationally. Exhibitions are displayed in the Academy’s Main Galleries, Sackler Wing of Galleries and Gabrielle Jungels Winkler Galleries. We are looking for a Senior Exhibitions Manager, responsible for project managing specific exhibitions from inception to conclusion, ensuring the smooth running of all exhibition logistics.
About you
With at least four years relevant experience, you will have exceptional project management skills and extensive knowledge of organising loan exhibitions on a large scale. You will have specific and robust experience of loan negotiation, organising transport, insurance and immunity from seizure, touring exhibitions, budget management, and planning exhibition installs and strikes. You will demonstrate excellent interpersonal and communication skills, and have the ability to work simultaneously on numerous projects.
You must have strong stakeholder management skills, and an adaptable approach to work with the ability to achieve projects within tight deadlines. The ability to speak another European language would be advantageous.
You are likely to be educated to degree level, preferably in Museum Studies, Gallery Management, Art History or a related subject. You will have a genuine interest in the work of the Academy.
What benefits do we offer?
We offer a very generous pension scheme, contributing up to 10% of your salary into a defined contribution scheme. 
On top of 25 days’ holiday and 8 days bank holiday each year, we close between Christmas Eve and New Year, allowing staff additional paid holiday.
Staff are encouraged to attend free History of Art and life drawing classes on site.  We also have a staff choir, running club and craft club. Best of all, we have a reciprocal agreement with many leading museums and art galleries in London and New York, that allow you to enter for free with your staff pass.
Closing date for applications: 24th February 2019                                      
Interviews to be held week commencing: 4th March 2019           


Job Title: Senior Exhibitions Manager

Department: Exhibitions
Reports to: Head of Exhibitions Management
The Royal Academy’s Exhibitions Department organizes a world class programme of eight to ten exhibitions per year, focusing on solo exhibitions of historic, modern and living artists, artistic schools and movements, key international collections, large-scale surveys of major civilizations and work by Royal Academicians.
Drawn from public and private collections, the programme is often organized in partnership with leading museums internationally. It is displayed in three suites of galleries: the Main Galleries the Sackler Wing of Galleries and Burlington Gardens. The Main Galleries are one of the largest temporary exhibition galleries in Europe. 


To assist the Head of Exhibitions Management in managing the successful delivery of the RA’s Exhibitions Programme, and to project manage specific exhibitions, from inception to conclusion, ensuring the smooth running of all exhibition logistics and adherence to defined budgets.


  1. Assist with department and RA wide planning, to include attendance at Scheduling and other meetings related to logistical delivery of exhibitions at the RA..
  2. Work with the Head of Exhibitions Management to develop and implement improved strategies, procedures and policies relating to the delivery of RA exhibitions.
  3. Deputise for the Head of Exhibitions Management as required.
  4. Work closely with the Curators (both internal and external) and Rights & Reproductions team on the delivery of individual exhibitions.
  5. Generate loan letters in conjunction with the curatorial team, follow up on queries and provide progress information on individual loan requests as required.
  6. Establish positive working relationships with all lenders and key stakeholders, work with diplomacy and discretion at all times to negotiate and authorise loan agreements, manage all correspondence in relation to conservation, transport, couriers, insurance and display matters.
  7. Organise all aspects of exhibition logistics to include: loan lists, insurance, British Government Indemnity, transport and installation/de-installation requirements and in accordance with individual exhibition needs, Health & Safety regulations and agreed departmental policies and practices.
  8. Manage external consultants (designers, curators, conservators), obtain necessary information, verify details and deal with queries and difficulties as they arise.
  9. Liaise with internal departments as necessary during all stages in the planning, organisation and delivery of specific projects to ensure good information flow and smooth delivery of each exhibition
  10. Construct timetables, schedules and team-working plans for reference by external stakeholders (guest curators, exhibition designers, conservators); RA departments (Art Handlers, Security, Engineers) and touring partners.
  11. Act as first point of contact in relation to British Government Indemnity and Immunity from Seizure; remain abreast of developments in policy and requirements, discuss any issues arising with the Head of Exhibitions Management and ensure correct procedure is adhered to for each exhibition.
  12. Retain informed and up-to-date knowledge of developments relating to conservation and display considerations, and other matters relating to exhibitions organisation
  13. Manage all aspects of exhibition logistics for touring exhibitions. Develop opportunities for Academy generated touring exhibitions to other venues, in conjunction with the Curators and HoEM.
  14. Undertake courier duties, as required.
Financial and Contractual
  1. Manage budgets and budget forecasts for allocated exhibitions, monitor costs and highlight potential overspend to the Head of Exhibitions Management.
  2. Co-ordinate the process for invitation to tender for transport agents, external designers and contractors among others.
  3. Negotiate contracts with designers and contractors with reference to the Head of Exhibitions Management; ensure contract approval and negotiation support from in house legal team
  4. Negotiate contracts with touring partners, occasionally managing contracts from start to finish, with reference to the Head of Exhibitions Management.
Staffing/Line Management
  1. Line manage one Exhibitions Manager and lead on the training and development of all Exhibitions Assistants in consultation with the Head of Exhibitions Management
  2. Oversee induction of new Exhibitions Management staff, to include introduction to RA policies and procedures in conjunction with the Head of Exhibitions Management and HR team; contribute to quarterly HR-led breakfast induction session, representing Exhibitions team as a whole
  1. Gather and disseminate information promptly to relevant departments in the Academy
  2. Represent the Exhibitions Department, as appropriate, at cross-organisational meetings such as disaster planning, induction programme delivery, sustainability sub-groups, etc.
  3. Undertake any other duty which may reasonably be allocated by the Head of Exhibitions Management, Director of Exhibitions and other senior officers.
  • Graduate or Postrgraduate qualification in Museum Studies, Gallery Management, Art History or equivalent.
  • Knowledge of a second language would be an advantage
  • Well-honed project management skills, well organised, an excellent administrator with good attention to detail
  • Ability to work simultaneously on numerous different projects
  • Ability to develop strong working relationships with colleagues across the department, other Academy staff, conservators and external contractors such as designers and transport agents.
  • An adaptable approach to work, to achieve agreed deadlines and projects within tight schedules.
  • First class communication skills, both written and spoken; strong drafting skills
  • Ability to compile and present complex reports, maintain clear and concise records, filing and effective monitoring systems.
  • Highly computer literate with specific knowledge of Excel, Word and databases.
  • Commercially minded, numerate, with strong negotiation skills
  • At least 4 years relevant and extensive exhibition organisation experience, ideally gained in an equivalent visual arts organisation or similar.
  • Demonstrable experience of schedule planning.
  • Practical experience in the handling, transportation, installation/de-installation and display of a broad range of museum objects, together with other registrar duties.
  • Robust experience of exhibition budget formulation and monitoring; ability to highlight specific issues and implications for discussion with senior managers.
  • Experience of preparing and negotiating agreements and contracts associated with exhibition organisation, and of working with Government Indemnity schemes.
  • Experience of organising and co-ordinating tender processes.
  • Previous experience of staff supervision
  • Excellent diplomatic, interpersonal and communication skills –to effectively manage relationships with lenders, individuals, agencies, institutions, designers, transport agents, drivers, couriers and conservators
  • Ability to work flexibly and collaboratively as a team member in a project-based environment - initiating and building on ideas with a positive attitude.
  • Confident and assertive
  • A genuine interest in the work of the Academy

Skills Required

  • Event Management
  • Event Coordination

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