Production Coordinator, The Art Institute of Chicago

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Job Title: Production Coordinator

Job ID: 8958


  1. Works with various museum personnel–curatorial, education, development, and marketing–in developing concepts and specifications for exhibition catalogues and permanent collection catalogues. In particular, contributes ideas and helps conceptualize content, appearance, and digital features of upcoming printed and digital books on the AIC collection.
  1. Develops schedules and budgets for all books produced in-house. Gathers, analyzes, and compares bids from suppliers.
  1. Helps the Associate Director of Production and the Financial and Administrative Coordinator to compute and track project budgets in Excel; pay invoices in timely fashion; update Publishing project spreadsheets; and finalize/close-out projects.
  1. Works with photo editor, editors, Imaging, freelance photographers, and others to help secure necessary photography and artwork (including rights to reproduce such images). Approves all images for publication, and, in digital projects, makes sure photography and examinations for each work are complete.
  1. Coordinates all aspects of design and technology with the designer/programmer, obtaining approvals from all relevant parties; and coordinating with the photographer to realize the highest quality illustrations. Serves as coordinator between designer and editor, helps editor manage galleys, page proofs, and bluelines. Schedules meetings as needed.
  1. Works with Associate Director of Production, color separator, and Imaging, coordinating approval of color separations and other images with all relevant parties. Assists the Associate Director of Production with reviewing and approving color separations and other digital images to the best level of quality possible, proofing in the galleries and in outside collections. Attends press okays when appropriate and possible; handles all details from binding through shipping, coordinating shipping and receiving with Financial and Administrative Coordinator and the Museum Shop.
  1. Ensures that requirements are met for book projects as set forth in contracts with publishers or distributors, as well as sponsors. With the editors, coordinates flap copy information, approvals of layouts, frontmatter language, and credits; also manages invoices and shipments; provides materials for marketing purposes; secures barcode, and so forth.
  1. Works with proposals for licensing and secondary sales of our titles through publisher/distributor, such as to book clubs, securing print and shipping costs, determining financial and other advantage/disadvantages for museum to agree to such sales, and, if agreed to, coordinating run-on or separate printings for each sale. For foreign-language editions, coordinates translations, typesetting, design, printing, and publisher for production of foreign-language editions.
  1. Helps to train and supervise Production Assistants, as well as interns and volunteers working on production-related matters.
  1. Reviews copy for distributor’s sales catalogue and other marketing materials for physical description of books, specifications, prices, etc.
  1. Coordinates creation of dummies and presentation materials for designers, book fairs, and publishers.
  1. Attends regular meetings with the Museum Shop and Imaging, exhibition catalogue review meetings, and Publishing review and planning meetings.
  1. With Associate Director of Production considers designers, technologists, and printers–local, national, international–who wish to work with the Art Institute.
  1. Works with production team and color separator to digitally archive CMYK images of the museum’s permanent collection. Shares RGB files used in publications with Imaging.
  1. Attends symposia, workshops, fairs, etc., to learn about current state of the art methods of book design, image reproduction, digital publishing, printing, and print publishing.
  1. Stays abreast of developments in the print and digital publishing world, sharing news and advances with production team and Executive Director of Publishing.
  1. Specifically for digital projects, helps develop and apply file naming conventions to digital files; formats digital files to the proper specifications for publication; recreates digital annotations in vector format; tests and provides feedback on new iterations of digital platforms; and creates online research catalogues using the OSCI toolkit to facilitate remote access to imaging and selected resources.
  1. Tracks digital publications using Google Analytics and other tools, and makes regular reports on statistics. Assists in preparing presentations on digital and print publications.
  2. Will act as liaison between designer and backend developer, coordinates image production for digital publications.


Bachelor’s Degree required preferably in the graphic arts with a strong background in art history, fine arts, and/or publishing.  Ideal candidate will have at least one-two years’ experience in book production, graphic design, digital post-production, or user interface design.  Adobe Creative Suite (especially Photoshop and InDesign) and Drupal necessary.  Must be detail-oriented, able to work on multiple projects at once, and possess effective communication skills.