Museum Technician and Conservator  What They Do

Just the Facts

Museum Technicians and Conservators Career Video

Restores, maintains, or prepares objects in museum collections for storage, research, or exhibit. May work with specimens such as fossils, skeletal parts, or botanicals; or artifacts, textiles, or art. May identify and record objects or install and arrange them in exhibits. Includes book or document conservators.

This career is part of the Education and Training cluster Professional Support Services pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Installs, arranges, assembles, and prepares artifacts for exhibition, ensuring the artifacts' safety, reporting their status and condition, and identifying and correcting any problems with the set up.
  • Repairs, restores, and reassembles artifacts, designing and fabricating missing or broken parts, to restore them to their original appearance and prevent deterioration.
  • Cleans objects, such as paper, textiles, wood, metal, glass, rock, pottery, and furniture, using cleansers, solvents, soap solutions, and polishes.
  • Determines whether objects need repair and chooses the safest and most effective method of repair.
  • Photographs objects for documentation.
  • Prepares artifacts for storage and shipping.
  • Enters information about museum collections into computer databases.
  • Recommends preservation procedures, such as control of temperature and humidity, to curatorial and building staff.
  • Notifies superior when restoration of artifacts requires outside experts.
  • Supervises and works with volunteers.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.

Related Careers

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 20 lbs., sometimes up to 50 lbs. You might do a lot of lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Art Preparator --
  • Collections Manager --
  • Conservation Technician --
  • Conservator --
  • Exhibit Technician --
  • Museum Registrar --
  • Objects Conservator --
  • Paintings Conservator --
  • Paper Conservator --
  • Preparator --