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Re-opened for Applications, apply by 1 December 2023
PHOTO OXFORD DIRECTOR - ROLE DESCRIPTION
We are seeking to appoint a Director to lead the ongoing work of the small, independent charity, Photography Oxford (charity no.1154142), focusing on preparation for and delivery of the biennial Photo Oxford Festival. We’re looking for a strategic, creative and ambitious person who can build on our legacy and lead Photo Oxford in its next phase.
This is a freelance role, requiring varying time commitment through the year, and would suit a freelance or part time worker with ﬂexibility, based in or near Oxford. The anticipated time commitment is around 8 days per month, increasing to 16 days per month during the lead up to and the Festival period. The contract is to commence as soon as possible, allowing for hand-over from the current Director.
Photography Oxford was established in 2013 and has produced ﬁve Photo Oxford Festivals, most recently celebrating Women and Photography (2020/2021) and The Hidden Power of the Archive in spring 2023.
Photo Oxford 2023 reﬂected on the rich context Oxford has to oﬀer with links to archives and photographic collections, and wider connections. A varied programme of exhibitions, events (physical and online) and commissions was delivered across the city in partnership with institutions, commercial galleries, local arts and cultural organisations, and others, involving around 70 local, national and international artists and curators. The Open Call attracted photographers from over 60 countries who submitted 9,000 images, and the in-person Portfolio Reviews were sold out. Visitor, partner and artist feedback was very positive. The 2023 Festival Review is available to download from the website homepage.
We plan to return to our biennial autumn timing for the next festival in 2025.
Our mission: to deliver a biennial international photography festival featuring a diverse and ambitious programme of exhibitions and related events, professional development opportunities, and a public engagement and outreach programme, delivered in collaboration with strategic partners, including universities and communities, across the city of Oxford and worldwide.
Our values are:
• To be audience-focused, developing close, long-lasting and respectful relationships
• To be accessible to all, creating physical and digital opportunities for diverse audiences to engage meaningfully with photography
• To be impact driven, encouraging high-quality photographic exhibition and debate
• To be grounded in the opportunities oﬀered by being located in Oxford, a city of learning and one of the most diverse cities in the south of the UK
• To be environmentally responsible
The Director leads a small team of freelance staﬀ, and partnerships with local, national and international partners from the arts, public, educational, and business sectors. While partnerships and artists are widely distributed, the location of the Festival is speciﬁc to Oxford and the Director needs to have good access to and knowledge of the city’s cultural, social, institutional and business sectors and opportunities.
The nature and location of the charity brings ﬂexibility and opportunities, as well as challenges, and we look forward to progressing and embracing new ideas with the new Director. This is an opportunity for a dynamic individual to bring their unique vision, ideas and energy to lead the charity into its next phase.
Who we are looking for
The Director is responsible for the strategic, ﬁnancial, developmental and operational leadership of the organisation, and for leading a small team of specialist freelance staﬀ, as well as volunteers and collaborators, to achieve our mission and reﬂect our values.
We are looking for a leader with a strong interest in photography and its capacity to stimulate appreciation, understanding and enjoyment; a leader with imagination, expertise, tenacity and capacity to work collaboratively, resourcefully, and sustainably.
We welcome applications from all sections of the community. We are particularly interested in increasing the diversity of our team and welcome applications from people of Global Majority backgrounds.
Duties and Responsibilities
• Providing leadership and strategic focus, in line with our values and priorities, through setting clear organisational goals and delivering against them.
• Recruiting and managing specialist freelance staﬀ, and ensuring eﬀective communication and team structure.
• Providing, in consultation with the Artistic Director and specialist Trustees, artistic leadership in developing the festival programme, and associated activity and digital engagement between Festivals including learning and research opportunities.
• Ensuring that we meet commitments to access, diversity, inclusion and sustainability.
• Representing the organisation and its work to funders, external partners, media and stakeholders.
• Leading on development of strategic partnerships, project planning, contracting, risk review, and resilience.
• Leading, in collaboration with specialist staﬀ and nominated Trustees, on audience development including community engagement, communications and marketing to increase public awareness of and participation.
• Leading, in collaboration with the Artistic Director, the Treasurer and the Board’s Fundraising sub-group, on budgeting, fundraising, grant management, and income generation to secure a diverse income that supports our charitable aims and strategic goals and contributes to long term ﬁnancial sustainability .
• Working with the Treasurer on managing the budget, payments and cash ﬂow, and monitoring our ﬁnancial sustainability, including ensuring that ﬁnancial policies, controls and procedures are robust and in line with best practice.
• Working with the relevant Trustee to ensure that reports required by the Charity Commission and HMRC are submitted in a timely manner.
• Supporting the Board to fulﬁl its role and responsibilities, including reporting at Board meetings, and regular reviews with the Chair.
• Reviewing and updating of policies for approval by the Board, and monitoring compliance with such policies.
• Leading evaluation of the charity’s activities including data collection, consultation and reporting to funders.
Skills and Experience
We are seeking a dynamic and creative leader with:
• experience of leading, and/or of signiﬁcant project management within, a charity or similar not for proﬁt organisation, and a track record of eﬀective team leadership and successful delivery.
• passion for the arts and for working in the arts/not-for-proﬁt/charity sector.
• a keen interest in the visual arts and photography, and the opportunities they present for learning and community engagement.
• experience in managing relationships with partners and stakeholders.
• strategic thinking and planning, and ambitious visioning.
• ﬁnancial skills with a successful track record in fundraising, income generation, budget management, contract management, monitoring and reporting.
• understanding of the infrastructure of the arts and creative industries sector in England and, ideally, within the Oxford area.
• experience of devising and delivering innovative and exciting projects, exhibitions and/or activities with aspiring, emerging and established artists, curators and researchers, and/or with communities and educational institutions.
• commitment to inclusion and diversity in the arts.
• eﬀective communication skills with the public and colleagues, to be able to represent Photo Oxford conﬁdently with all stakeholders, partners and individuals.
• a good understanding of audience development, and experience of marketing and communication.
• strong diplomatic and negotiation skills, with an ability to build eﬀective internal and external relationships.
• an understanding of best practice relating to work within a charity, with Trustees and with volunteers.
• resilience under pressure with an eﬀective approach to resolving challenges and identifying creative solutions.
• good access to and knowledge of Oxford and its environs, and knowledge of or familiarity with its institutions and communities.
Contract and Fee
This role will be covered by a freelance contract for services, paid at an daily rate in line with the agreed budget. The Director reports directly to the Board of Trustees. No work base or equipment is provided, and expenses are covered in line with the agreed budget and procedure. Speciﬁcs of days of work and rate of pay will be agreed with the Chair, according to the services required at various stages of work, and the funds available.
To apply please send by email to firstname.lastname@example.org:
• A statement on why you would like to take on the role and how your experience is relevant (maximun of 2 pages)
• Your CV
• Contact details for two referees and a brief description of your relationship to these people. Referees would be contacted after shortlisting.
Please submit your full application, as outlined above, as a single PDF document. Please write ‘Photo Oxford Director Application’ in the subject heading.
If you would like to apply in any other format, or if you have any questions before submitting your application, please contact the current Director, Danielle Battigelli, on email@example.com, or the Chair of Trustees, Paul Bullivant, on firstname.lastname@example.org
Application Deadline: 6pm on Friday 1 December 2023
The selection process:
• Short-listed candidates will be invited to attend an interview in Oxford on Wednesday 6 December 2023
• Candidates selected for the next stage may be invited for a second interview
PHOTO OXFORD TRUSTEE CALL
Photo Oxford was established as an independent charity in 2013 and has produced five Photo Oxford festivals, most recently celebrating Women and Photography (2020/2021) and The Hidden Power of the Archive (spring 2023). We are looking for new Trustees to complement the skills and representation of the current Board, as some Trustees approach the end of their terms of office and as we prepare for the next festival in autumn 2025.
The Festival delivered in April/May 2023 reflected the rich context Oxford and its wider connections have to offer, through its links to archives and photographic collections. A varied programme of exhibitions, events (physical and online) and commissions was delivered across the city in partnership with institutions, commercial galleries, local arts and cultural organisations, involving around 70 local, national and international artists and curators. The Open Call attracted photographers from over 60 countries who submitted 9,000 images, and the in-person Portfolio Reviews were sold out. Visitor, partner and artist feedback was very positive.
We welcome applications from candidates of any age over 18, and from a range of socio economic and culturally diverse backgrounds and identities, in order to strengthen our governance and representation.
Please note that this is a voluntary, unpaid position. Reasonable expenses will be refundable, including travel, where appropriate. The preferred term of office for Trustees is 4 years, and may be renewed once by agreement. Various current trustees are approaching the end of their terms of office and we are seeking new trustees to support the next phase of the charity’s work.