Open call: apply to work with the Strandbeests

Peabody Essex Museum
East India Square, 161 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970-3783 USA

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Have you ever dreamed of working with the Strandbeests?

The Peadbody Essex Museum is seeking highly motivated and communicative part-time Gallery Interpreters/Operators to provide a wide range of experiences related to the demonstration, use, access, maintenance, and care of the museum's temporary exhibition, Strandbeest: The Dream Machines of Theo Jansen. This exhibition features kinetic sculptures that can be self-propelled by an air compressor or physically moved by visitors. Under the direction of the Lead Interpretation Planner the successful candidates will work closely with several departments including Guest Services, Education, Registration, Collection Management, Exhibition Planning, and Facilities. Candidates will play a key role in facilitating welcoming audience experiences in the exhibition by speaking and engaging with groups about the Strandbeests, operating the Strandbeests during demonstrations, assisting visitors in moving the Strandbeests, and performing preventative maintenance and repairs in preparation for movement experiments. The exhibition runs from September 19, 2015 – January 3, 2016. Training for this position will be required in July and August, dates to be determined, as well as trainings with the artist August 31 through September 11.

The Gallery Interpreter/Operator must be comfortable conversing with the general public and working with kinetic sculptures that require mechanical operation, hands-on tinkering and improvisation. They must have excellent problem solving skills, attention to detail, ability to remain calm in unpredictable situations, basic knowledge of engineering and mechanics, and a proven ability to work with power tools and hand tools, including an air compressor. A strong candidate will have a friendly, personable manner, an interest in engineering and contemporary art, and a passion for working with people.

Prior experience in education, customer service, and operating or repairing machinery preferred. Some museum experience and a degree in related field preferred. Standing and ability to lift 50 lbs required. Minimum of 16 hours per week Tues. through Sun. Extended hours for special programming may also apply.


Qualified candidates should email their resume, cover letter and salary requirements, to, or by mail to Human Resources, Peabody Essex Museum, East India Square, Salem, MA 01970-3783. PEM is committed to diversity among its employees and encourages qualified candidates from all backgrounds to apply.

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