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Manager, Decorative Arts

Job details

18 Feb 2022
Work type
Full time employment
Work classification
Culture & Heritage, Management & Admin


Webb’s is New Zealand’s premier multi-department auction house. Our team of specialists offer industry leading service and expertise in Art, Collectors’ Cars, Motorcycles and Automobilia, Decorative & Asian Arts, Jewels, Watches & Luxury Accessories, and Fine Wines & Whiskies. We are committed to promoting outstanding collectibles and achieving excellent results at auction.

Established in 1976, Webb’s has a long and rich history. Founder Peter Webb was a pioneering entrepreneur, establishing and defining markets in art, antiques and collectibles. This powerful legacy motivates us to be the best, most innovative, and most trusted auction house in Aotearoa today.

Our team are dedicated, passionate, and fully committed to achieving outstanding results across the business. Raising the bar at every step is our modus operandi.

This approach continues to bring success and growth. An incredible opportunity has arisen for an experienced individual to join our leadership team in the newly created role of Manager, Decorative Arts.  Our dedicated team work with a variety of decorative art, covering, Mid-century modern design, Maori and Oceanic artifacts, furniture, silver, clocks, rugs and ceramics and Asian Art.

This opportunity will suit a highly driven, experienced leader with comprehensive knowledge of NZ and International art and collectables.  In addition, you will work closely with the Head of Decorative Art, in continuing on our journey to expand and develop our Decorative Arts portfolio across the company.

Expectations of the role responsibilities will include full preparation of Decorative Arts Auctions, written proposals for potential vendors, cataloguing collections and assisting with print and online publications.

A professional attitude with the ability to meet deadlines and to prioritise work is a key focus. In addition, proven ability to produce exceptional written material with attention to detail is essential. 

The role

  • Pro-actively develop the department’s business strategies build on existing and potential relationships with key stakeholders
  • Oversee the production of catalogues within tight deadlines
  • Understand and work within departmental budgets
  • Produce innovative business proposals when required
  • Managing and maintaining departmental contracting (Agent Agreements)
  • Managing property flow and stock control procedures through SAM software
  • Delegating tasks to the Decorative Arts Specialists and administrator and supporting   them in their roles.
  • Responsible for the execution of preview events and take a lead role in ensuring the auctions are seamlessly organised
  • Building new and maintaining existing client relationships
  • Working with Marketing teams to manage and coordinate campaigns and digital marketing
  • Advise and guide the General Manager on commercial matters regarding the New Zealand market
  • Work with Head of Decorative Arts to manage the Department
  • Work with Head of Decorative Arts to oversee the content to ensure it is: consistent and adheres to our company guidelines
  • Pro-actively research new trends to leverage content  
  • Working with teams during Auctions - including venue set-up / displays
  • Management of auctions including telephone and live bidding platforms
  • Contributing to the Management meetings
  • Making decisions that will enable Webb’s to deliver its strategy effectively and efficiently
  • Shaping a positive culture and inspiring excellent performance from staff

Skills and experience

  • Auction industry experience highly desireable
  • Knowledge of international decorative arts and collectables
  • Demonstrated leadership experience
  • Ability to communicate clearly and effectively both verbal and written
  • Excellent project management skills together with superior marketing acumen
  • Copywriting and the ability to write critically on artworks/collectable pieces
  • Exceptional personal presentation
  • The ability to multi-task with complete efficiency and productivity
  • Reporting and analytical skills 
  • Financial acumen
  • Inter-personal and relationship management skills  

Personal Attributes

  • Positively driven 
  • Takes pride in working to a high standard 
  • Takes ownership of position 
  • Dynamic & energetic 
  • Naturally intuitive 
  • Organic problem-solver 
  • Works well under pressure 

In addition, success will be demonstrated by good leadership and empowerment of employees in the Decorative Arts Department.

If you are looking for a unique working environment, where you can expect to be given opportunity to grow and be challenged, this could be the role for you! 

How to apply

Please submit your resume along with a covering letter to:

Maree Judd

M Judd Consulting Ltd 

Written by


20 Jan 2022