Position Announcement: Collections Assistant, Indian Arts Research Center, School for Advanced Research

Founded in 1907, the School for Advanced Research (SAR) is one of North America’s preeminent independent institutes for the study of anthropology, related social sciences, and the humanities. SAR is home to the Indian Arts Research Center (IARC), one of the nation’s most important Southwestern Native American art research collections. The IARC also provides resident fellowships for Native artists. Additionally, the IARC stewards and makes available to scholars and artists and extensive collection of Native American art and conducts lectures, artist open houses, and campus tours for the public.

Since its establishment in 1978, the IARC has served as a key resource for museum professionals, scholars, artists, and the source communities represented in our collections. Our outreach to and work with descendant communities increases knowledge and understanding of our collections while also providing important guidance from tribal representatives about long-term collections management and community engagement. Another important focus of IARC’s programs is the intergenerational transfer of skills and knowledge to preserve culture and artistic practices. IARC also works closely with underserved communities in the Santa Fe area to provide arts education for youth.

 The Indian Arts Research Center has an immediate opening for a collections assistant. This position is responsible for assisting the collections manager with the physical care and management of the Indian Arts Research Center (IARC) and Arroyo Hondo collections in consultation with IARC director and in accordance with the AAM Code of Ethics. Provides direct assistance with preventive maintenance and conservation techniques, storage, and any concerns associated with daily collections care practices. This position is full-time (40 hours per week), non-exempt.


  • Assists with collections care including acquisitions, preventive conservation, access, security, environmental and pest control monitoring, storage, inventory, and loans.

  • Assists in training of volunteers and IARC interns working on collections management and curatorial projects.

  • Assists the collections manager with collections-related correspondence.

  • Works with IARC staff in achieving administrative goals and objectives.

  • Updates data (i.e., condition, conservation, and locations records) into The Museum System (TMS) database.

  • Assists with symposiums, seminars, collection reviews, NAGPRA consultations, and other program activities as requested by the collections manager and IARC director.

  • Assists in monitoring HVAC system and other environmental controls to ensure storage conditions are adequate for collections.

  • Assists in implementing integrated pest management procedures.

  • Assists with research and community visits and accommodates Native artist fellows with access to collections when needed.

  • Assists IARC staff with collections management-related tours.

  • Informs collections manager of any concerns related to the general maintenance and care of collections.

  • Other duties as assigned.

SUPERVISION: The position reports to the IARC collections manager.

REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS: Minimum two years museum experience. Bachelor’s degree in art history, anthropology, Southwest studies, museum studies or history desired. Demonstrated knowledge of Southwest Native American art and culture. Basic knowledge of storage practices, collections management, and preventive conservation methods. Must also have some familiarity with, and be respectful of, culturally sensitive issues among the diverse Native American communities represented in the IARC collection. Good speaking, writing, and computer skills are necessary. Must have good interpersonal skills and be excel in a team-oriented environment.

Salary is $34,000 to $37,000 annually, depending on experience and qualifications. Benefits include 403(b) retirement plan and option to participate in group health, dental, life insurance plans. SAR also offers paid holidays as well as generous vacation and sick leave benefits.


Application deadline is Friday July 19, 2019. To be considered, applications will be emailed to sandoval@sarsf.org. The application documents must be in one .pdf file and includes cover letter, résumé, and list of three (3) professional references; and the .pdf file name includes candidate’s last name.