The National Gallery of Ireland (‘Gallery’) is Ireland’s major national cultural institution devoted to the collection and care of fine art. Comprising some 16,000 paintings, drawings, watercolours, miniatures, prints, sculpture and decorative arts, the institution's extensive holdings include masterpieces by many of the most celebrated figures in the history of western European art. In addition, the Gallery houses the most representative collection of historic Irish art. Funded mainly by the State, the Gallery employs more than 140 staff and provides free access to the public 361
days a year. In 2021, the Gallery was a finalist in two categories of the Digital Media Awards - Best in Government & Not for Profit for ‘National Gallery at Home’, and Best Podcast.
Established in 1964 the Conservation Department at the National Gallery of Ireland promotes and develops research and conservation projects through interdisciplinary cooperation with conservation institutes and museums in Ireland and internationally, as well as sharing skills and developing innovative conservation practises and processes.
As part of the Getty Foundation's Conserving Canvas initiative, Conserving Canvas (Getty Foundation) ,the National Gallery of Ireland conservation department is offering two fixed term contracts, of one year duration, for Conservators with specific interest, experience and expertise on structural treatments of artworks on textile support.
The position offers a unique opportunity to advance conservation knowledge and hands-on skills practice and process by focusing on artworks on textile support from different historical and technical backgrounds: an oil on canvas by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, “Guercino” (1591-1666),and two collages on textile support by Juan Gris (1887 -1927). The conservators will work in close collaboration and under the supervision of the Gallery’s senior conservators as well as attending seminars and workshops held at the National Gallery of Ireland in collaboration with guest senior
conservators from some of the most renowned European conservation institutes.
We aim to enhance international conservation education in both ethical awareness and technical practice to ensure that critical conservation skills needed for care of works on textile support do not disappear. Reporting to the Head of Conservation or nominated deputy, the Conservator will:
Survey selected works on textile support from the Gallery’s collections
Carry out structural conservation treatments on selected works on canvas from the
Gallery’s collections such as consolidation and repair - lining - de-ling and re-ling
Carry out traditional and advanced tensioning processes on textile support on works from
the Gallery’s collection
Carry out comparative analyses on structural conservation treatments in the Gallery’s
collection of works on textile support
Carry out scientific analysis and develop further collaboration with technical analysts and
Develop research and test series on traditional and modern structural treatments
Convey scientific and technical information to the conservation and scientific
communities, and disseminate scientific research to non-technical audiences
Identify risks and deterioration of works on textile support and refine preventative
Keep and maintain up to date reports on all treatments taken
Support the Conservation Department in creating and developing the projects’ data
cataloguing platform and contribute to the curation of the Gallery’s publication on the
projects’ research and treatments
Support the Conservation Department in creating further educational resources for
dissemination, such as getting involved in the creation of online project content and
organising project study days and workshops
Write articles for publication, give professional talks and contribute to the Gallery’s
programming in audience engagement
Supervise the junior conservator working on the project
The successful candidates will have:
A recognised qualification in Painting Conservation
A minimum of three years’ experience working on structural conservation techniques and
treatments of works with textile support, preferably in a museum environment
Experience with traditional and/or modern structural conservation techniques of works on
Excellent organisation and planning skills coupled with an ability to meet deadlines.
Experience working on collaborative research projects in collaboration with multiple
internal and external stakeholders.
Supervisory/mentoring experience is desirable
Excellent research and analytical skills with excellent attention to detail
Excellent writing skills, including publishing experience An ability to work on own initiative
while being part of an effective team
A positive approach to working in the Gallery and demonstrated enthusiasm towards
raising awareness about the preservation and conservation activities in a Conservation
A keen interest in working with a range of different museum professionals and
collaborating with fellow conservators and colleagues
Proficiency in MS Office packages and databases
Note: This job description is a guide to broad areas of development and should not be regarded
as a comprehensive listing. All employees are required to be compliant with the Gallery screening
and security procedures.
Candidates must be eligible to work in Ireland.
How to apply: Please upload a cover letter and curriculum vitae. Candidates should note that
panels may be formed from which future positions may be filled. Candidates are required to submit a portfolio with four examples of documented research and structural conservation treatments of works on textile support in PDF Format. The Senior Conservator position(s) is funded by a grant from the Getty Foundation