Platform Engineer

You're an experienced software engineer with an impressive track record building web applications and complex distributed systems. You’ve worked with a variety of databases, carefully considered the design of APIs, and reasoned about the architecture of large systems. You’ve shipped multiple product releases while constantly improving your team and capabilities. You're passionate about beautiful code and inspiring products and are looking for an opportunity to build something that users love.

Artsy’s Platform Engineering team builds the core data, APIs, and services that power Artsy’s multi-faceted products. (See a recent post about our stack.) We’re building [and sometimes rebuilding] the platform for Artsy’s future growth, while also ensuring the wider team’s tools and infrastructure are well-suited to shifting business needs.

The Platform engineer will join a lean team responsible for a growing set of shared services including the core API, search, image-processing, and the machine learning tools enabling features such as artwork similarity and recommendations. We try to build for 10x our current scale of data, throughput, and global reach, while still always striving for simplicity.

And Platform engineering isn’t only concerned with backend services; we frequently partner with product teams (in areas such as Auctions, Collectors, or Content) to test new features, support changing business needs, or tackle thorny architecture challenges. We frequently evaluate new technologies, and try to source the best tools for use across Artsy’s ecosystem.

The qualified candidate:

  • Has experience with traditional ("3-tier") web applications as well as with more complex distributed systems
  • Is familiar with modern programming tools, frameworks, testing
  • Has a strong sense for API design, database design, naming, and factoring apart services
  • Is aware of security best-practices and common pitfalls
  • Is familiar with ops concerns such as deployment, migrations, configuration, and provisioning
  • Can self-start and is able to problem-solve given loosely-defined business needs
  • Chooses tools and approaches prudently, deciding what's "good enough" and where to invest for the future
  • Continuously improves
  • Teaches others and is open to learning
  • Communicates complex technical issues clearly
  • Familiarity with specific tools we’ve adopted (such as Ruby, Rails, Scala, Spark, and Docker) is helpful but not necessary.


Artsy has 35 services and applications in production. Check out our latest blog post about our tech stack.


In a sentence, Artsy is like Pandora for the fine art world. Our goal: we want to make the traditionally closed-off and intimidating art world easily accessible to anyone. We believe that by increasing access, we can expand the market and get more people educated and passionate about fine art.


  • First and foremost, you will get to work with an amazing team. We invest an extraordinary amount of time finding the best possible people. This means we go through many candidates before making an offer, but as you know, five great engineers are better than a hundred good ones.
  • High alignment between Artsy's business goals and user experience goals. The larger an audience we reach, the more we educate them, and the more we help them discover art they love, the better our business does, and the more we support our institutional partners and the artists they represent.
  • There are no set hours or holidays, no pointless bureaucracy. Work whenever you want, wherever you want. That's the beauty of hiring world-class people, they deliver incredible results and are wonderful to work with — what else matters? The Netflix Culture slides do the best job of describing how we think about culture at Artsy.
  • To create an awesome UX we employ cutting-edge technologies such as Node.js, Backbone.js, Coffeescript, Haml, Sass, Ruby on Rails, and MongoDB; but when we can't find a technology that does what we need…
  • We write our own open-source projects and contribute them back to the community.
  • We are solving very hard problems. To make art historically relevant recommendations, you can't rely on collaborative filtering alone. We do real-time search in 800 dimensional space (one dimension for every art historical category). We are also working on semantic search, fuzzy full-text search, visual similarity search, and high-resolution image tiling and security among others.
  • At its core, Artsy is a technology company. In addition to the engineering team, both the CEO and COO have technical backgrounds (Computer Science from Princeton, and Mathematics from Columbia). Our ultimate goal is to create Artificial Intelligence with the qualities of the world's most omniscient art advisor. If Skynet ends up winning, at least it will have good taste :).
  • We have partnered with over 2,500 of the largest galleries in the world, 70 major art museums and all major auction houses. No start-up has ever come so close to unlocking this massive data set before.
  • Our downtown Manhattan office has stunning 360 degree views of New York. You can see the horizon in all 4 directions, the iconic midtown and downtown skylines, the Hudson and East rivers.
  • At Artsy, we are bringing art, science, design, and engineering together. Forgive the cliche, but there's no better way to say it: we want to change the world.

To Apply

If you want to change it with us, please drop us a line and include some links to what you've built here. When you apply, you will be directed to a third party site.


Artsy has five core values that will inform your experience at Artsy.

Art x Science: We believe in uniting empathy with logic, emotion with data, and intuition with research in everything we do. Whether in business strategy or design, culture or code, we seek the magic that happens when the often separate worlds of art and science come together.

People are Paramount: We spend extraordinary energy finding the best person for a job—and once found, we give them the trust and autonomy to be CEO of their role. We avoid pointless bureaucracy and prefer to empower people with information rather than limit them with process.

Quality Worthy of Art: We aim to create an experience worthy of all the world’s art and so hold ourselves to the highest standards in all our work. We believe that the best long term quality comes from rapid shipping, iterating, and learning as we go.

Positive Energy: We know positivity and optimism benefit our work, and we harness positive energy as a vehicle towards greater awareness, growth, and collaboration. We believe in cultivating a positive relationship to art as opposed to one based on exclusivity or scarcity.

Openness: We believe in being open with each other and the world—whether in open-sourcing our code, sharing feedback, or building a diverse and inclusive work culture. We believe in bringing our full selves to work and manifesting an open world where everyone has access to art.

Artsy is an equal opportunity employer. We value a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture. We encourage applications from all qualified individuals without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, marital status, disability, and veteran status.