Media Preservation Technician (Los Angeles)

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is hiring a part-time Media Preservation Technician (25-29 hrs/week) for the dedicated and ongoing management of the Time-Based Media collection. Reporting to and working closely with the Digital Preservation Manager in the Collection Information and Digital Assets department, the Media Preservation Technician works collaboratively with multiple departments to carry out the long-term preservation, organization, and accessibility of LACMA’s Time-Based Media art collection. LACMA’s media collection consists of predominantly digital video with some analog formats (film/video), software and computer-based works, and custom electronics.

The Media Preservation Technician will also be responsible for working with the Digital Preservation Manager to enhance preservation practices and continuing to implement cross-departmental procedures for ensuring effective and proactive stewardship of these works; digitization and file transfer, data migration, maintenance of servers, defining display conditions and acceptable modifications for exhibition, accuracy of record-keeping, etc. Familiarity with audiovisual equipment from the 1970s to present-day technology (file formats, video editing suites, metadata tools, etc.) required. Comfort with a variety of computational environments and operating systems a plus.

Some duties include: review incoming Time-Based Media Questionnaires, formats/deliverables, and installation documentation and advise on any concerns related to the acquisition; register and condition screen new TBM acquisitions; catalog media assets with descriptions, significance/context within the work, and physical conditions in the collection management system; extract and manage technical and provenance metadata for digital files and executables; work with the Incoming Loans (IL) Registrar to keep IL TBM procedures and documentation as current as possible; assess display requirements and provide costs/labor estimates for installing the work into the future to factor into acquisitions and exhibitions budgets in coordination with Gallery Media and Art Preparation and Installation; update TMS for greater accuracy of TBM assets and document migration and ongoing care of Permanent Collection (PC) assets; ensure the health and safe storage of original media carriers, assessing needs for refreshing/migrating data as deemed necessary; work with Senior Associate Registrar, PC to develop cataloguing standards for TBM artworks; advise on proper handling and preparation of TBM assets for proposed loans and exhibitions in coordination with Gallery Media and Art Preparation and Installation. Prepare exhibition/access files, and coordinate with Conservation for creation of physical exhibition materials (e.g. exhibition film prints); notify the appointed Collection Management Technician to rehouse and label primary enclosure with object numbers; work with Digital Preservation Manager and Head of Collections Management to develop procedures for screening TBM Artworks; work with TBM Committee to inform and govern digitization/migration plan; digitize PC TBM Media transfers and manage relationships with outside vendors for various digitization and migration tasks not feasible in-house; maintain inventory of PC TBM artwork carriers and update TMS records (locations, generations/copies, etc.); ensure proper disposal of deaccessioned or decommissioned copies; coordinate with Gallery Media to provide access to PC TBM artworks for installation in galleries; advise the Associate Registrar, Outgoing Loans regarding feasibility for OGLs of TBM artworks and facilitate exhibition copies to lend to borrowers; work collaboratively with Conservation on media works involving electrical or physical components; maintains regular and reliable attendance; other projects and duties, as assigned.

The qualified candidate will have at least two years of experience as an Audio Visual Technician, Museum or Gallery-based Media Installation Technician, and/or hold a Masters in Audio Visual Archiving or Preservation. Must demonstrate the ability to organize, prioritize and handle tasks efficiently and in a timely manner. Exercise sound judgment, decision making and handle confidential and sensitive information effectively. Must be well-organized, detail-oriented, and self-motivated, and demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills. Familiarity with open-source software, source code, and/or programming languages a plus. Experience with TMS (The Museum System) collection management system is preferred.

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