Job Opportunity – Exhibit Designer

High Desert Museum Job Opportunity – Senior Exhibition Designer

Title:   Senior Exhibition Designer
Division:   Programs
Classification:   Salaried, regular full-time exempt
Reports To:   Director of Programs
Supervises:   Will supervise staff as this position grows
Salary Range:   $65,000-$70,000 DOE

High Desert Museum – Organization Description

Since opening in 1982, HIGH DESERT MUSEUM has brought together wildlife, culture, art and natural resources to promote an understanding of the natural and cultural heritage of North America’s High Desert country. We do so through indoor and outdoor exhibits, wildlife in natural habitats, living history demonstrations and dynamic programs on a beautiful, 135-acre campus in the pine forest. The Museum is a nonprofit organization accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, is a Smithsonian Affiliate, was the 2019 recipient of the Western Museums Association’s Charles Redd Award for Exhibition Excellence and was awarded the 2021 National Medal for Museum and Library Services. During the 2018-19 fiscal year, 195,000 visitors enjoyed the Museum.

The Museum is located in Bend, Oregon, a fast-growing, charismatic city nestled against the Cascade Range at the edge of the High Desert. We strive to be inclusive, culturally humble, relevant, curious, and mindful. As a team, we work together to wildly excite and responsibly teach, creating connection to and dialogue about the High Desert.

Job Summary

The Museum seeks a Senior Exhibition Designer to work as part of the Exhibitions Team creating innovative, interdisciplinary exhibitions that spark connection to and dialogue about the High Desert. The position also supports the overall visitor experience through ongoing evaluation and improvements of elements visible to visitors both inside the Museum and on our grounds.

The successful candidate will help create immersive spaces that evoke wonder as a pathway to learning. The Senior Exhibition Designer has advanced knowledge of 3-D design and hands-on installation experience, with a knack for bringing together materials and spatial elements to execute bold designs that are both on time and on budget.

Importantly, we recognize and honor that the qualifications required to excel in this position can come from a range of both professional and lived experiences. Below we describe what we believe to be important qualifications for a candidate to have while remaining open to the diversity of experiences that can lead to these skill sets. Position descriptions can be presented in a way that leaves qualified candidates feeling unwelcome, intimidated, uncomfortable and/or unqualified to apply. Recognizing that, we strongly encourage anyone who feels passionate about this work and believes they have what it takes to thrive in this role to apply.

Minimum Qualifications

  • A bachelor’s degree in a field appropriate for the position, e.g. graphic design, design management, industrial design, studio arts, environmental graphics, architecture, etc.
  • At least five years of professional experience in 3-D design, and the ability to provide a professional portfolio with on-the-job work samples
  • Ability to take a project from conception to installation, including demonstrated knowledge of concept design, schematic design, design development and construction/fabrication/production documents
  • Knowledge of ADA and universal design
  • Experience with construction and fabrication materials, including their character, quality and cost, as well as knowledge of green materials
  • Deft at collaborating with a team to bring together a shared vision, often within complex design constraints
  • Comfortable with juggling multiple projects and deadlines. Experience in creating schedules, prioritizing tasks and problem solving as needed.
  • Proficient in software applications including Adobe Creative Suite, SketchUp, MS Office, etc.
  • Experience managing budgets
  • Ability to balance team and individual responsibilities; exhibit objectivity and openness to others’ views; give and welcome constructive feedback; contribute to building a positive team spirit; ability to build morale and group commitments to goals and objectives and supports everyone’s efforts to succeed
  • Understanding of, and commitment to, justice, equity, inclusion, accessibility and diversity practices

Preferred Experience and Skills

  • Knowledge and understanding of visitor experience standards and best practices
  • Content expertise within the areas of the Museum’s mission
  • Experience working with museum collections

Responsibilities and Tasks

  • In collaboration with the Exhibitions Team, conceptualize, develop, design, test, produce, install and maintain permanent and temporary exhibit experiences.
  • Create an excellent visitor experience by designing mission-based exhibits that are immersive, interactive and consider the diverse needs of our audiences.
  • Develop a cohesive creative plan for and execute environmental design and graphics for use in new and traveling exhibitions, digital media, museum signage and wayfinding.
  • Use computer aided design (CAD or similar) to produce detailed floorplans and drawings-to-scale of exhibition components, including furniture, cases, mounts, etc., to conservation standards.
  • Develop construction and production drawings for contractors, preparators and
    other vendors.
  • Collaborate with internal and external stakeholders to conduct reviews, approvals and incorporate feedback into exhibit and graphic designs.
  • Collaborate with the Communications department on exhibition graphic identities and institutional style guides.
  • Ensure that departmental practices remain in accordance with design industry standards; employ leading design programs and stay current with technological advancements.
  • Collaborate with the Exhibitions Team to develop, manage and stay within department budgets and exhibition production timelines.
  • Ensure visitor safety and meeting and exceeding Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards through sound design and production methods.
  • Oversee production quality, supply stock and equipment upkeep.
  • Embrace, support, and help implement the Museum’s continued learning and commitment to diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion
  • Participate in Museum-wide planning processes, as requested.
  • Execute other duties as assigned as needed to help abide by the Museum’s values, drive our vision, and fulfill our mission.

The Museum provides an equal employment opportunity to all persons without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/transgender status, age, disability, veteran or marital status, genetic information or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.


The High Desert Museum wildly excites and responsibly teaches through innovative, interdisciplinary experiences, creating connection to and dialogue about the High Desert


Please send resume & cover letter to the High Desert Museum,