Photograph Archivist





This position will remain posted until filled, but applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by end of day on April 30th, 2022.


The Biblioteca Berenson, the library of I Tatti, seeks a dynamic and collaborative Photograph Archivist to assist in making image collections accessible in a historically important photo archive transitioning from an analog to an increasingly digital environment. Under the supervision of the Curator of the photo archive, and in collaboration with the Head Archivist, the Photograph Archivist will be responsible for arranging and describing the library’s analog and digital images as needed, and will contribute to the digitization and preservation of visual resources, both legacy and new, to facilitate their discovery and access. This position is part of a team of six including two photo catalogers and an imaging technician.


This is a full-time position, with an Italian contract of indeterminate duration. Salary based on qualifications and experience. Applicants who possess the necessary qualifications to work and reside in the Europe Union will be given preference.


Applicants should provide a cover letter, a resume, and the names and contact information of up to two referees at the end of your cover letter. Please submit your application materials by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page. For additional information, please contact Michael Rocke, Director of the Biblioteca Berenson, at





  • Holds primary responsibility for processing print and digital images and collections, including accessioning, surveying, arranging, rehousing, description, preservation, and end-processing activities such as labeling and barcoding containers and updating bibliographic and item records as needed.
  • Coordinates and assists in carrying out digitization of visual collections materials as a routine part of processing, and depositing of digital objects to Harvard’s Digital Repository Service.
  • Creates, updates, and publishes catalog records or EAD XML finding aids for items or groups of images and collections, according to local, Harvard Library and international standards using pertinent systems (currently JSTOR Forum, Alma, ArchivesSpace).
  • Collaborates with the head archivist in the processing of mixed visual and document-based archival collections.
  • May assist local Digital Humanities group and work with other metadata specialists in the library on digital projects and data enhancement.
  • Stays abreast of emerging standards and best practices in metadata, cataloging, archives and digital asset management.
  • May serve as a liaison to or member of pertinent committees or working groups of Harvard Library or other partner organizations.
  • Creates and maintains written documentation on image cataloging procedures, collection processing plans, reports on processed collections, etc.
  • Maintains library user guide to image collections.
  • Provides reference or research assistance to I Tatti community and other library users, both in person and online, and participates with colleagues in supervising the Special Collections reading room.
  • Helps to organize exhibits, both physical and online, and to create content for the I Tatti website.
  • Occasionally trains and supervises student interns.
  • Performs other duties as needed or assigned, or as made possible by the incumbent’s subject or technical strengths.


Basic qualifications

  • University degree, preferably in art history.
  • 2+ years related professional experience working with photographs in an academic library/archive/museum.
  • Demonstrated fluency in English and Italian, with excellent oral and written communication skills.


Additional Qualifications


  • Master’s degree in library and/or information science with specialization in archives or archives management.
  • Advanced degree in the history of art preferred, especially medieval/early modern art.
  • 4+ years related professional experience preferred, including skills working with photographs and other special collections in an academic setting.
  • Working knowledge of other major European languages highly desirable.
  • Experience working with structured descriptive data and content standards for library, archival and special collections resources, such as DACS, MAR21 and AACR2.
  • Familiarity with RDF, XML, and Linked Open Data principles and practices in cultural heritage institutions.
  • Working knowledge of vocabularies in the cultural heritage domain (Getty ULAN/AAT, Geonames, GND, WikiData, VIAF).
  • Attention to detail, precision, and excellent organizational skills.
  • Ability to establish priorities, meet project deadlines, and solve problems.
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively.
  • Commitment to updating skills as required to perform job duties.


Biblioteca Berenson


Located in Florence, Italy, the Biblioteca Berenson is the library of I Tatti – The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, one of the world's leading institutions for advanced research in all aspects of late-medieval and early modern Italy. The library’s rich collections of over 200,000 books, periodicals, and musical scores, a historically important archive of 350,000 photographs, and a growing archive of personal and institutional papers offer comprehensive resources in all disciplines for the study of Renaissance Italy. They include selected coverage of related fields such as classical and medieval studies, the historiography of the Renaissance, cultures around the Mediterranean, and early modern Europe and beyond. The library serves a residential community of several dozen scholars and welcomes a large number of other local and international researchers. The Biblioteca Berenson is also one of over 70 libraries that make up Harvard Library, the largest academic library system in the world.