Archival Volunteer Opportunity: Rothko Chapel

Position Description: The Rothko Chapel seeks a trained archivist or librarian to volunteer in the Rothko Chapel archives. The Rothko Chapel Archives currently amount to over 400,000 items stored in archival quality boxes and filing cabinets documenting the Chapel’s 44-year history. We are in need of support in the ongoing efforts to archive the currently daily activities of the Chapel, ensure that all past materials are stored properly and accessible, and assist with research requests.


  • Trained Librarian or Archivist
  • Flexible schedule and the ability to volunteer during workweek (Monday through Friday, between 9am and 5pm)
  • Reliable transportation
  • The ability to work independently with little to no supervision

About the Rothko Chapel: The Rothko Chapel, founded by Houston philanthropists John and Dominique de Menil, was dedicated in 1971 as an intimate sanctuary available to people of every belief. A tranquil meditative environment inspired by the mural canvases of Russian born American painter Mark Rothko (1903-1970), the Chapel welcomes over 70,000 visitors each year, people of every faith and from all parts of the world. On the plaza, Barnett Newman’s majestic sculpture, Broken Obelisk, stands in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The Rothko Chapel is an independent institution, a sacred place open to all people, every day, whose mission is to inspire action through art and contemplation, nurture reverence for the highest aspirations of humanity, and provide a forum to address global issues of worldwide concern.

Responsibilities may include:

  • Assist contracted archivist in the organization of the archives
  • Assist in the preparation of a finding aid by inputting all contents into Filemaker Pro software
  • Process incoming and backlogged collections by accessioning them into the main collection
  • Organizing archival materials
  • Re-housing documents in acid-free folders and containers
  • Assist on-site researchers at the Rothko Chapel Archive by explaining archival policy:
    • Identifying and retrieving research materials
    • Photocopying documents
    • Monitoring the researcher
  • Correspond with researchers, search for the materials, and produce required reproductions
  • Digitizing the collection (some can be done in-house, others will have to be sent out)
  • Lift boxes of no more than 50 lbs

For more information or to submit your interest, please contact Ashley Clemmer Hoffman at