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David Winfield W. Scott Edit Profile

artist , Museum administrator

David Winfield Scott, American Artist, consultant. Captain United States Air Force, 1945. Member Cosmos Club.


Scott, David Winfield was born on July 10, 1916 in Fall River, Massachusetts, United States. Son of Benjamin David and Edith May (Romig) Scott.


AB, Harvard College, 1938. Master of Arts, Claremont Graduate School, 1940. Master of Fine Arts, Claremont Graduate School, 1951.

Doctor of Philosophy, University California, Berkeley, 1960. Doctor of Fine Arts, Corcoran School Art, 1991.


In addition to his time as the leading director of the National Museum of American Art, Scott held numerous other positions at various art museums and galleries. Scott joined the Smithsonian Institution's staff in 1963, as assistant director of what was then known as the National Collection of Fine Arts after teaching art history at Scripps College in Claremont. In 1969, he was named planning officer of the National Gallery, where he served as liaison with architect I.M. Pei.

In 1990, Scott took over for 11 months as the acting director of the Corcoran, and arranged for new exhibitions while bringing stability to the gallery's finances. Scott was an avid enthusiast of Contemporary Art. He himself was avid painter of what he called "abstracts and mindscapes." His personal collection included largely Post-WWII painting, namely Abstracts.

He was known to be fond of Arshile Gorky, Stephen Sacklarian, and Millard Sheets, whom he took a class from, among other notable Contemporary Abstractionists. Scott's first wife, Tirsa Saavedra, died in 1986.


Captain United States Air Force, 1945. Member Cosmos Club.


Married Tirsa Lilia Saavedra, July 10, 1947 (deceased January 1986). Children: Tirsa Margaret, Edith Elizabeth. Married Doris Jean Fitch White, August 19, 1988.

Benjamin David Scott

Edith May (Romig) Scott

Tirsa Lilia Saavedra

Doris Jean Fitch White

Tirsa Margaret Scott

Edith Elizabeth Scott