Exhibition Designer

Carnegie Museum of Natural History


Website Carnegie Museum of Natural History

Carnegie Museum of Natural History, one of the four Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, is among the top natural history museums in the country. It maintains, preserves, and interprets an extraordinary collection of artifacts, objects, and scientific specimens used to broaden understanding of evolution, conservation, and biodiversity. Carnegie Museum of Natural History generates new scientific knowledge, advances science literacy, and inspires visitors of all ages to become passionate about science, nature, and world cultures.

Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh is interested in candidates who, through their experience and collaborations, will contribute to diversity and excellence of the Carnegie Museums community.

The Exhibition Designer proposes inspired design solutions and shepherds the exhibition process from concept to installation within the Carnegie Museum of Natural History (including the Powdermill Nature Reserve). The Designer works as part of interdisciplinary teams to create immersive experiences that make learning and discovery accessible and show the interrelationship between humanity and the rest of nature.

The CMNH Exhibition Department is small but growing, so the Designer would be responsible for a range of duties including planning, testing, coordinating, and executing design related components of gallery installations for new, temporary, and permanent exhibitions.


  • Bachelor’s degree in architecture, exhibition, graphic, environmental, theatrical, or product design, or experience amounting to the equivalent.
  • Position requires three years of experience in designing/developing exhibits and installations. A combination of related training, education, and/or experience will be accepted.
  • Demonstrated experience with 3-dimensional design and construction and with CAD (Computer Aided Design), Sketch-up, Vectorworks and/or other 3D design tools; ideally has experience with Adobe Creative Suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign), and the ability to communicate rough concepts through hand sketches.
  • S/he must be able to administer the design process from initial concept through completion required.


  • Requires knowledge of design, fabrication, and production methods, a strong ability to multi-task, manage timelines, ability to visualize and present design concepts, and an understanding of multiple design disciplines and how they may be integrated into a branded gallery environment.
  • Must have the ability to produce 2D/3D sketches, floorplans, elevations, flythroughs, and/or renderings.
  • Should have a demonstrated knowledge of prototyping, lighting design and understanding of materials and fabrication techniques with sensitivity to conservation concerns and guidelines for accessible design.
  • Demonstrates ability to adhere to and maintain extensive multi-year budgets and schedules.
  • Should have patience, adaptability, and interest in learning from the experiences of others.


  • Advocate for a great visitor experience by designing exhibitions that are immersive,
    interactive, and consider the needs—both emotional and practical—of our communities.
  • Work with interdisciplinary teams to plan, design, schedule, test, produce, install, and maintain exhibitions. Find creative solutions to intellectual and practical design problems for the presentation of specimens/objects and interpretive materials in exhibitions and permanent collection installations. Prioritize green design solutions and ideas that improve accessibility and efficiency.
  • Assume responsibility for all phases of designing new and temporary exhibitions, as well as design maintenance projects in existing exhibitions: scheduling, budget monitoring, design research of objects displayed, space planning, construction and shop drawing documents, revisions, and quality control; coordinate request for proposal, contracting and implementation with outside exhibition design contractors for same
  • Use computer aided design (CAD or similar) to produce scaled floorplans and elevations including layout of walls, platforms, and furniture as well as specific detailed object placement (case layouts, groupings) and color schemes for review/approval; create three dimensional scale models, quick concept sketches, and renderings as needed throughout exhibition design process
  • Present concepts for review and discussion with the goal to move toward a final design.
  • Specify materials, paint, and finishes. Prep files for production paint, and finishes. Prep files for production as needed and coordinate with print shop. Create construction drawings that hold outside contractors accountable to specific design details and qualities of construction. Produce exhibition documentation (install drawings, graphic/production/install schedules) for both in-house and rented exhibitions
  • Coordinate with, engage, and oversee outside vendors/engage, and oversee outside vendors/contractors in the fabrication, installation, maintenance, and repair of exhibition components associated with the museum’s temporary exhibition, major permanent collection installation, and special projects installation, maintenance, and repair of exhibition components associated with the museum’s temporary exhibition, major permanent collection installation, and special projects.
  • Undertake additional administrative and/or design responsibilities under the supervision of the Director of Exhibitions as required.

This is a union position. 

The following PA Act 153 clearances, or proof of application of clearances, are required beginning employment and as a condition of continued employment:

  • Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance
  • Pennsylvania State Police Criminal Record Check
  • FBI Fingerprint Criminal Background Check

Obtaining the required clearances is completed as part of the new hire process.

Carnegie Museums is an Equal Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer – Minorities / Females / Veterans / Individuals with Disabilities / Sexual Orientation / Gender Identity

The above job description reflects the essential functions and qualifications for the position identified, and shall not be construed as a detailed description of all the work requirements that may be inherent in the position. The job description does not constitute an employment contract and does not alter the at-will relationship between CMP and the employee.

To apply for this job please visit us60.dayforcehcm.com.