David C. Ward is Senior Historian at the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. He has curated exhibitions on Walt Whitman, Abraham Lincoln, Generals Grant and Lee as well as (with Jonathan D. Katz) 2010's controversial and award winning Hide/Seek. Difference and Desire in American Portraiture. He has also curated Poetic Likeness. Modern American Poets (2012-13) and Face Value. Portraiture in the Age of Abstraction (2014) at the NPG. He is currently working on exhibitions on 19th century photographer Alexander Gardner and contemporary fashion photographer Mario Testino.
With graduate degrees from Warwick University (England) and Yale, he is the author of Charles Willson Peale. Art and Selfhood in the Early Republic (2004) and has co-edited four volumes of the papers of Charles Willson Peale and his family.
In addition to his work at the Smithsonian, Ward is a poet and literary critic; a small selection of his poetry was published as Internal Difference (Lintott 2011) and Carcanet Press will publish a full collection, entitled Call Waiting, in August 2014. Ward writes the "Poetry Matters" blog for Smithsonian Magazine.