Conservator for ethnological objects

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Employer: 
Goethe-Institut
Job location: 
Luanda (Angola)
Contract type: 
Contract
Application deadline: 
Sunday, 10 January, 2021 - 00:00

The Goethe-Institut Angola is looking for a conservator for ethnological objects.

Earliest possible date of recruitment: February 1, 2021 (depending on the state of the pandemic in Angola).
Term: limited to 12 months.
Contract: Fee-based.
Fee: 57,600 EUR, to be paid monthly in Angolan Kwanza, in accordance with Angolan law.

The Goethe-Institut is the Federal Republic of Germany's cultural institute, active worldwide. It promotes the study of German abroad and encourage international cultural exchange.

The main task is the organisation and management of a comprehensive training course in the field of preventive conservation of ethnological objects for two staff members of the Museu Nacional de Antropologia (Luanda, Angola) and two external participants from other Angolan museums or universities (all with little or no previous knowledge). The project is part of a partnership between the Museu Nacional de Antropologia Luanda, the Ethnologisches Museum Berlin (SMB/SPK) and the Goethe-Institut, which also includes equipping the museum's conservation workshop with suitable tools and materials. All activities are to be developed and carried out jointly by the conservator and the participants. They include:

• Exemplary surveys of objects as a basis for the digitization of the collection in a database
• Survey of conditions in the depot, in the exhibition rooms and in the workshop
• Concepts for depot storage, object storage and packaging (as part of the object survey)
• Creation and implementation of standard operating procedures, e.g. for object presentation in exhibitions, object handling, object labelling, in-house transport, security aspects, etc.
• Recording of an object's condition (damage survey), ideally to be recorded in the database, with a view to future conservation measures
• Creation and, if necessary, implementation of a concept for pest control (Integrated Pest Management/IPM)

The training course is set to last 11 months and is intended to provide participants with sufficient knowledge in preventive conservation. After the formation, they should be able to work independently and without further instruction in this field, either at the Museu Nacional de Antropologia or at other Angolan collections.

Requirements:
• Completed university education in conservation (Bachelor's degree or higher) or equivalent; several years of experience in the field of museological conservation.
• Experienced knowledge of museum operations (including past experiences and knowledge of procedures and preventive measures in museum depots).
• Previous experience in the conservation of ethnographic objects.
• Previous experience in handling databases.
• Teamwork and communication skills.
• Willingness to share and explain knowledge and experiences.
• Readiness to move to Luanda/Angola.
• Curiosity about Angolan life and culture.
• Language skills: Portuguese (C1); English (B2)

Desirable:
• Previous experience in collection management and survey of objects
• Didactic experiences
• Language skills: German (B1)

Working conditions:
• Annual fee: 57,600 EUR, to be paid monthly in Angolan Kwanza, in accordance with Angolan law.
• Insurances are not included and must be provided for independently.
• Part-time schemes are not possible.
• The project is supervised and managed by the Goethe-Institut Angola.
• A project coordinator takes care of all organisational necessities such as business trips, handling of purchases and costs, press and public relations work; a volunteer supports the team in Luanda. The Goethe-Institut Angola will help with finding accommodation and all other practical questions.
• With over 6,000 objects from all ethnolinguistic groups, the collection of the Museu Nacional de Antropologia is considered the most comprehensive Angola collection in the world. In it are many pieces that are absent in comparable collections, such as inventories of enslaved persons from the 18th and 19th centuries, which have unique historiographical significance far beyond Angola.
• The museum has a new depository of a good standard.
• Basic equipment for preventive conservation work is available/will be provided (according to international standards).
• Living conditions in the country: Luanda is the capital of Angola. The city is on the country's Atlantic coast with its iconic large beach on the "Ilha". There is an interesting and distinct cultural life with a special focus on music and dance. During the last years, a growing range of restaurants and clubs has opened. The reports of extremely high living costs, which can still be found on the internet, are no longer true due to the devaluation of the national currency.

Please send your detailed application documents (letter of motivation, CV, certificates and job references) by January 10, 2021 to: maximilian.wemhoener@goethe.de