William Scott

William Scott was born in San Francisco, California, in 1964. A self-taught artist, Scott’s paintings often render San Francisco as “Praise Frisco”, an imagined utopia that realizes his idealization of a wholesome place of community. Scott features transformed city landmarks, neighborhood sites, and portraits of African-American celebrities and community members from his church. Scott layers text phrases such as, “Reinvent the past”, “Another life”, and “Wholesome encounters” in his paintings, reiterating the aspirations in his imagined world.

Scott’s recurring fantastical narratives and characters address realities of race, class, identity, citizenship, spirituality, and tolerance. Born and raised in San Francisco, Scott has observed the marginalized spaces in the city, including his own neighborhood, change over the years. Through meticulous detailing of a futuristic urban utopia in his drawings and paintings, Scott communicates his desire for an optimistic future.

Scott’s work has been exhibited at galleries and fairs including Boca Raton Museum of Art, Palais de Tokyo, The Armory Show, NADA Miami. His works are in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, the Studio Museum in Harlem, and the Oakland Museum of California.

William Scott lives in San Francisco, California, and works out of Creative Growth Art Center in Oakland, California.