About the Albright-Knox Art Gallery
Founded in 1862 as The Buffalo Fine Arts Academy, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery is the sixth-oldest art museum in the United States and one of the oldest anywhere dedicated to modern and contemporary art. As one the most prominent cultural institutions in Western New York, the Albright-Knox serves tens of thousands of students, families, tourists, and art lovers each year.
In 2019, the museum broke ground on a transformative campus development and expansion project. Upon completion of construction, the museum will open in 2022 as the Buffalo AKG Art Museum. At the same time, the museum has been engaged in a wholesale reevaluation of its institutional identity, with a particular focus on making the Buffalo AKG a more inclusive, diverse, equitable, and accessible institution.
Among the most important elements of this effort is the renaming of the museum’s Department of Learning and Creativity (previously known as the Department of Education and Community Engagement). This change was made in alignment with the new, expanded Learning and Creativity wing, making the museum an even greater source of engagement and inspiration for the community and the variety of visitors we serve.
The Buffalo AKG seeks a visionary, inclusive, and innovative leader to build and enhance the strategic vision for the museum’s Learning and Creativity Department, including the review of traditional museum education functions (School & Educator Programs, Youth, Teen and Family Programs, Adult Programs Accessibility and Community Programs) as appropriate. The Buffalo AKG celebrates and fosters cross-departmental collaboration and dynamic, out-of-the box thinking.
The Director of Learning and Creativity reports to the Director. As a member of the Leadership Team, the Director of Learning and Creativity is an active participant in high-level discussions about museum operations, finances, facilities planning, and strategic decision-making. The Director of Learning and Creativity leads a department of six to seven full-time staff members and dozens of part-time staff and volunteer docents who work directly with the public to foster playful and enriching learning leading to inspirational knowledge and engagement. The Director of Learning and Creativity also works in close collaboration with the Curatorial, Public Art, Advancement, and Communications & Community Engagement Departments and, as needed, with the Board of Directors, participating in Board meetings and relevant committee meetings.
The Director of Learning and Creativity oversees and develops creative, playful and engaging educational offerings, including classroom learning, interpretive planning for exhibitions, docent programs, and a variety of legacy programs. In consultation with the Director, other members of the Leadership Team, and Learning and Creativity Department staff, an immediate goal will be to develop a comprehensive suite of programs in preparation for the opening of the Buffalo AKG Art Museum and its operations thereafter. An area of development will be programs and initiatives that open possibilities for learning through play.
This position builds upon the museum’s commitment to inclusive, diverse, equitable and accessible practices, working with Public Art, Curatorial, Advancement, and other departments to respond to the challenges and opportunities of vigorously engaging new and existing audiences – school aged through adult, individuals, and families – from a revitalized campus and a dedicated new Learning and Creativity wing with five classrooms. Working closely with the Director of Communication & Community Engagement, the Director will be a visible and collaborative leader, working with key community stakeholders and other partners as the public face for the department, with a goal of expanding the audiences actively engaged with the museum.
The work of the Director of Learning and Creativity is guided by the museum’s vision, mission, values, and Strategic Plan, and by the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility, the museum’s organizational commitment to which is codified in the Buffalo AKG IDEA Framework. The Director of Learning and Creativity embraces opportunities for professional development with an eagerness towards learning new skills and tactics and implementing novel approaches that will make the Buffalo AKG a leader among its peers. The Director will work across departments, developing in-gallery interpretation for all audiences. A keen interest in dynamic, engaging, and innovative programming will be critical to the Director of Learning and Creativity’s success.
Competencies and Qualifications
- Master’s degree in Education, Art History or related field, plus five years relevant experience in arts education, guest services, public programs, curating, community engagement or related specialization
- Five plus years experience in managing others/progressive leadership with responsibilities in planning, development, and implementation of educational programs.
- Engaged knowledge/interest of Modern and Contemporary art practices helpful.
- Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain of a wide variety of community partnerships.
- Demonstrated understanding and experience in the application and use of digital technology to engage, communicate, educate, and attract visitors.
- Demonstrated knowledge of learning theories and audience research data and evaluations methods desirable.
- Deep commitment, knowledge and application of IDEA best practices in all programs, to broad audience participation.
Skills and Abilities
- Exemplary interpersonal, written, and verbal communication skills including highly developed public speaking skills.
- Ability to generate and balance visionary thinking with practical, results-oriented approaches.
- Demonstrated problem-solving and collaboration skills.
- Demonstrated team leadership, management, and development skills.
- Superior project management skills, including organizing and prioritization.
- Active curiosity about new technologies and avenues for interpretation.
- Self-directed, able to work independently and efficiently.
- Ability to maintain the highest level of confidentiality and discretion.
- Understand and maintain highest ethical standards related to organizational responsibilities and public accountability.
- Ability and willingness to work evenings and weekends.
- Mastery of Windows Office, including strong working knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
Apply for this position online