Director of Design

Minneapolis, MN

The Walker Art Center is seeking a Director of Design to oversee its legendary design studio, which is advancing towards an expanded sense of publishing and to continue pushing boundaries. This individual will lead a vibrant group of creatives, including designers, copy editors, as well as print, digital and interactive creators. Reporting to the Head of Content and Communications, they will serve as a key operational leader and partner in the ongoing structuring of communication and content output of Walker Art Center.

 What you get to do:

Design Leadership:

  • Share your vision; your critical/provocative/imaginative input will be key in collectively re-defining what publishing means for the Walker
  • Direct the creation of visual communication and design that is both progressive and accessible, responsive and responsible to all constituencies of a contemporary art and cultural institution
  • Commission work; setting achievable creative briefs, for in-house and externally commissioned creatives, teams, agencies
  • Demonstrate exceptional skills in organizing and managing teams and projects which involve multiple stakeholders
  • Present ideas and works developed within the department to live audiences, large groups as well as colleagues and peers, to provoke collaboration and exchange
  • Show dedication to ideas of diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Be aware of the global design trends and have confidence to go beyond them
  • Invest in the discourse of design while practicing and proposing new possibilities on how design decisions effect the presence of an art institution within wider culture

People Leadership

  • Lead and sustain a collective group of talent comprised of in-house direct reports and freelancers to form project-specific teams
  • Nurture a creative community of collaborators around the institution
  • Recruit, develop and motivate talent to do culturally relevant design work
  • Foster growth within staff, both in-house and out; mentoring talent with a commitment to a progressive, healthy work environment

Build Relationships:

  • Demonstrate exemplary collaboration, working in close contact with curators, directors, and across all dimensions of cultural production as practiced at the Walker
  • Build strong relationships; oversee long-term projects; contribute to generating campaigns as well as making certain their successful completion
  • Nurture the grounds for cross-collaborative efforts between departments

Manage Resources:

Work with Head of Content and Communications to develop annual budget for the design studio and publishing program. Manage staff and institutional resources


  • Full-time (35 hours), Salary Exempt, $120,000- 130,000 annually, dependent on level of experience; flexibility to work some evenings and weekends required.
  • Excellent benefits package, Walker membership and museum discount, and the opportunity to work alongside talented individuals and support remarkable artists, events and programming.

What we need from you

  • Knowledge and passion for the arts and cultural sector, as well as being an active participant in the current discourse on design and visual communication
  • Extensive experience working in, and/or overseeing design in both traditional (print) and interactive (web, social) communication platforms
  • Ability to serve as a subject matter expert on design history, making relevant connections to inform current work
  • To provide editorial input rooted in broad working knowledge of art, design, and culture with the ability to contribute to the overall communications strategy for the department
  • Being savvy and well-versed in conventional media such as exhibition graphics and printed matter, while being a confident risk-taker in digital media
  • Ability to build a consistent yet diverse visual language for the institution, in order to establish channels of communication regarding various constituencies, both local and global


  • 5+ Years’ experience managing teams
  • Experience in working with art and cultural institutions, from identity building to launching campaigns, including digital media
  • A portfolio that demonstrates clear, innovative creative direction of photo/illustration/video work
  • A commitment to equity and inclusion in all its forms
  • Demonstration of managing a diverse group of talent to launch a product and/or campaign
  • Some experience working in or with a marketing agency
  • Interest in editorial content
  • Interest in exhibition making, editing, and advising content organization
  • Experience within a cultural organization in an in-house capacity; or having closely worked with an institution over a significant amount of time

 Please note: international candidates have the ability to work in the United States at the time the position is accepted. Candidates must also secure at their expense and be in possession of a valid US work visa. Qualified candidates with diverse backgrounds and/or studies are strongly encouraged to apply

The Walker is committed to being an inclusive workplace. Our goal is to be a diverse workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the communities and audiences we serve. We are dedicated to fair and inclusive employment practices for all individuals.

The Walker Art Center requires all employees to comply with our COVID vaccination policy, which requires staff to be fully vaccinated or test every 6 days. The Walker Art Center is an equal opportunity employer and will consider request for reasonable accommodations based on disability or sincerely-held religious beliefs possible without undue hardship.