Thursday, February 15, 2007

now hiring...

MOCAD (museum of contemporary art) is in desperate need of a full time director with experience...if you know of anyone with lots of museum/gallery experience tell them to check here for all the qualifications (I think someone not from detroit might be the best choice to keep things fair and someone who has worked a lot with contemporary art and with galleries/dealers/up-and-coming talent. Someone with a youthful and experiment eye might be great too...we don't need another DIA). They are also looking for some other positions like Administrative Assistant, Development & Programming Coordinator and Exhibition Coordinator.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aren't these all positions that should have been filled before MOCAD opened?


Run away as fast as you can.

The coordinator position sounds like it's half building supervisor and half mover. Sad thing is, a super or a mover can make a lot more than $15/hr and they don't need a BFA 0r MA to do it.

Position Title: Exhibition Coordinator

- BachelorĂ­s[sic] Degree in Art History, Fine Art or Museum Studies required, M.A. preferred

Salary: $15 per hour


- Assists in the general administration and maintenance of museum and grounds...

-Lifts and moves works of art weighing up to 50 lbs

9:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point Anne. The test will be if MOCAD has also posted these positions on reputable arts organization websites like,, etc. or have they already made their insider picks and are just posting the positions to be sure they keep their 401 c 3 funding status? It will be very illuminating to see how high they set their sights and who they end up choosing. Hopefully someone with very real credentials, experience, intelligence, and enough chutzpah to show leadership when the board gets off track.

9:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's easy enough to answer Max's question. Try clipping parts of the job descriptions and do a Google search. You'll find that MOCAD is not looking beyond its own walls.

8:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you are the best candidate for this job, Ann. Go for it!


3:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is probably the best decision that someone at the MOCAD has made. They surely need someone with some communications skills to supervise. Past experience working with the staff was a debacle.

3:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd be tempted to post this on, or email this to every major arts institution that I could think of, colleges, museums, organizations, everything; national, international, anything but local... hmmmm?

11:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like that idea but I can't see anybody moving to Detroit for a chance to be a political punching bag for minimum wage.

Jerry Vile was quoted as saying MOCAD is better than NOCAD. I predict it will be WASCAD in a year's time.

8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The wages are really disapointing.

Even in Detroit's faltering economy, there are Arts Management jobs that pay better. You can get away with low wages if you offset it with some other type of incentive... but they're not even offering benefits (that I can see), but less anything more creative. Except, I guess, it would be a guaranteed way to get your art in a show...

4:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As far as I'm concerned, anybody with ideas that they're confident about should say, "I'll do it!" despite the unreasonably low wages. Be a part of something. Help it grow.

10:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know someone with a CCS BFA who isn't doing anything. I wonder if he's seen this.

9:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not everyone has a trust fund and can afford to accept a job with "unreasonably low wages". Ideas don't pay the rent. Or the doctor, if no benefits are offered.

How can we expect the non-arts public to ever respect the arts if we don't respect ourselves? If we don't think the arts represent a reasonable career path with reasonable compensation why should anyone else?

9:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon#1, it's precisely that mentality that is problematic in the detroit arts community. (note, anon#2). There are some really great programs at UofM and EMU and WSU for Arts Management. The problem is that when those students graduate they move elsewhere.

There was a comment on another thread: "Leipzig is considered "the hottest place on earth" for the art world, with record numbers of German galleries relocating there and young painters selling their work in the millions. Liverpool similarly is well on its way back having given over warehouses to artists and musicians and now a Mecca for arts and next year's Cultural Capital of the year. So why isn't this in any of the shows?! Lessons to learn and updates on unshrinking cities. And realistically does Detroit begin to follow this trend and if not how?"

Not everywhere has unreasonably low wages for arts jobs, many cities take it seriously and as a result there is a talent-drain in Detroit. Not only in artists moving away to make a name for themselves, but in the arts infrastructure itself. (and, of course, the two feed eachother).

I know that this is going to be an unpopular statement but... a BFA from CCS does not make you a qualified Art Director. The Skillset required to be successful at making art is in NO WAY related to the skillset required to make you a successful art director. IN FACT, I would say they are 100% opposed: the skillset (and mindset) that defines great artists, would make a shitty art director. There are, of course, exceptions, but the Detroit arts community would do better to take advantage of those differences. If the artists did their jobs, and the arts managers did their jobs, everyone would prosper.

But, like has been said, Detroit as a whole doesn't respect the arts, it's seen as non-profit "do it for the good of humanity, art is a reward in itself" b.s. As a result, you're talented and skilled arts managers--- move to Seattle and get paid about 4x what MOCAD is offering. Yes, MOCAD is young and has budget constraints and a good director would understand that. But there has to be some reasonable compensation, not necessarily in the form of $$$. But (as far as I can see) MOCAD isn't offering ANYTHING to offset the wages. Just the joy and privaledge of working your ass off. Thus they will not attract anyone worth attracting, and it's a fair bet that without talented leadership they will not be able to surmount the obstacles inherent in the area. Too bad, really.

12:56 PM  

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