National Gallery of Art - RESOURCES

Andrew W. Mellon Internship in Modern Materials

The Art Materials Collection and Study Center was established in 1994. Its mission is to acquire and document the materials used by artists. The collection is composed of paints, varnishes, grounds, mediums, pigments, supports, tools, and trade literature produced by art materials manufacturers.

The conservation division of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, is offering an internship to further the goals of the materials collection. This position is supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The two-year appointment includes an annual stipend in the mid to upper twenty thousand-dollar range along with health care coverage and other benefits. The researcher will catalogue items in a computerized database, capture digital images of art materials, prepare samples for storage, check the database against the collection for accuracy and process trade brochures to be converted into Portable Document Files that will allow database users to search the collection and view associated documents.


Candidates should have an undergraduate degree in studio art and a minor or substantial course work in art history. The research assistant must have a familiarity with a wide variety of art media and understand their working properties. The research assistant must have knowledge of computer applications, especially database software. Data entry and inventory requires meticulous attention to detail. Organization and adherence to established protocols are essential to success in this position. Good writing skills and the ability to work both alone and cooperatively are important. These opportunities are awarded without regard to age, sex, nationality, or race. Finalists who are not United States citizens must provide their own health insurance and proof of mandatory supplemental insurance during the fellowship period.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates must submit the following materials in English:

  • A curriculum vitae or résumé that includes basic biographical information, current and permanent addresses, and telephone numbers
  • Transcripts of undergraduate courses of academic study (although official transcripts are preferred, unofficial copies are also accepted)
  • A cover letter providing the candidate's interests and intent in applying for the research position along with an outline of knowledge and use of art materials that may include digital images to support the narrative provided
  • Two letters of recommendation from professionals familiar with the candidate's work (sent directly to the address that follows)

Electronic documents will be accepted as official application material except for letters of recommendation, which must be original, signed documents sent as surface mail. All electronic media must be in Adobe PDF format with margins no greater than 8.5 × 11 inches. Formal applications and supporting materials must be sent by U.S. Postal Service or an express mail service for delivery at the Gallery by no later than April 30, 2013, to:

Michael Skalka, Conservation Administrator
Conservation Division, National Gallery of Art
2000B South Club Drive
Landover, Maryland 20785

[email protected] (for inquiries only)

Candidates will be informed of the decision of the search committee by May 24, 2013.