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The Barnes Foundation: Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Greek and Roman Antiquities

The Postdoctoral Research Fellow conducts in-depth research on the 85 Greek and Roman antiquities in the Barnes collection. Working collaboratively with a consulting senior scholar in ancient Greek and Roman art as well as with Barnes conservators, s/he produces new knowledge about this under-studied group of objects, placing each work in historical context, uncovering its original meaning or function, and integrating technical/ conservation study into the art-historical narrative. The Postdoctoral Fellow delivers this new research in the form of scholarly ‘object white papers’ to be housed in the curatorial files. S/he also helps disseminate this new knowledge to both academic and general audiences by organizing scholars’ days, presenting lectures to public and to Barnes staff and volunteers, teaching two short classes per year, and producing text for the website.

This is a two-year position beginning in January 2022.

We’re committed to diversity and equal opportunity in our recruitment and hiring. Highly qualified candidates of all backgrounds are welcome and encouraged to apply for this position.

Established in 1922 as an educational institution, the Barnes Foundation carries out its mission by promoting appreciation of the arts and horticultural science, through the preservation, presentation, and interpretation of the collections of Albert C. and Laura L. Barnes.

Celebrated for its exceptional breadth, depth, and quality, the Barnes Foundation’s art collection includes works by some of the greatest European and American masters of impressionism, post-impressionist, and early modern art, as well as African sculpture, Pennsylvania German decorative arts, Native American textiles, metalwork, and more.

The Barnes Foundation engages diverse audiences through its exceptional collections and high-quality programs that reflect a broad range of periods and cultures and build on the founders’ innovative educational vision of transforming lives through the arts and horticulture. 


Job Specific Competencies:

  • Conducts research on Greek and Roman antiquities in the Barnes permanent collection. Builds up provenance, exhibition histories, and bibliographies; uncovers the original meanings and functions of individual objects.
  • Works collaboratively with the conservation department to study each object’s technical and material qualities, incorporating these observations into the art-historical narrative.
  • Travels to area museums and libraries to consult primary and secondary sources.
  • Meets quarterly with the Consulting Senior Scholar to analyze findings and review progress.
  • Writes ‘object white papers’, or scholarly reports, summarizing new research. In many cases these papers will represent the only knowledge we have on an object.
  • Produces accessible interpretive texts for the website based on research gathered in object white papers.
  • Delivers public lectures and teaches two short courses per year for the adult education program.
  • Regularly updates database (TMS) with new documentation and findings based on standards developed by the Research Coordinator.
  • Educates volunteers and staff about objects in the collection through gallery talks and lectures.
  • Works collaboratively with Collections; Archives and Library; Conservation; and Education.
  • Helps organize scholars’ day at the Barnes to share findings with specialists in the field.
  • Communicates with colleagues in the field.
  • Performs other duties as requested. 

Skills and Knowledge:

  • Ph.D. in Art History completed or in progress, specializing in ancient Greek and/or Roman art. applicants must be within 3 years of completing their course of study.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Experience using archival collections and working with objects.
  • Experience with collections management databases preferred, i.e., TMS.
  • Museum experience a plus. 

Competitive Benefits Include:  Group health, dental and vision insurance; flexible spending accounts; short- and long-term disability and group life insurance; 403(b) with matching contributions; Employee Assistance Program; voluntary benefits; as well as paid vacation, personal time, sick time and holidays.

Please include a cover letter and an updated resume with your application.

The Barnes Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer and we’re committed to diversity and equal opportunity in our recruitment and hiring. Qualified candidates of all backgrounds are welcome and encouraged to apply for this position. Employees have rights under other laws including, but not limited to, the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Employee Polygraph Protection Act. We participate in E-Verify.

Successful applicants for employment with the Barnes Foundation must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by the date of hire as a condition of employment, subject to requests for accommodation.

To apply, visit: https://workforcenow.adp.com/mascsr/default/mdf/recruitment/recruitment.html?cid=57a31989-d414-4f1f-9309-a4a1f71a652d&ccId=19000101_000001&jobId=411808&source=CC2&lang=en_US


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