David Porter has been creating pottery as an art form for 39 years. A native of Chicago, he studied fine art in college in California. Over the years, as a full-time professional potter, David has developed a sculptural approach to decorating the surface of his works. Often he will create a figurative design with a raised, layered surface and occasionally will paint his designs onto the surface with his glazes and slips. He likes to use the flexibility of the clay to obtain interesting patterns. Sometimes a complete three-dimensional face will emerge from his work. Whimsical things often happen to his functional pieces. David is a very tall man and with his long arms he can throw vases and platters in larger sizes than most potters. He has always built his own wood-fired kilns for his stoneware and likes to experiment with salt and woods for its effects.
David has had one man shows in Chicago at the Nelson Gallery, at the Margaret Hartwell Museum and the Three Rivers College in Missouri and in Colorado at the Redstone Art Center and has taught workshops at the Anderson Ranch in Snowmass. However he always seems to drift back to his family’s summer cabin in the hills of Missouri where the quiet and the way of life there encourages his creativity.
In 1998 he established the Raven Center for the Arts, a non-profit center for the fine and applied arts focusing on workshops in drawing, painting, music and pottery. In the last five years he has been very busy as the director for the center and also in teaching intensive classes in wood-fired pottery and raku to other professional potters. He particularly enjoys teaching school children in the surrounding area who enjoy his wild, off-the-wall sense of humor. He is well known in the community for entertaining the locals by throwing a pot and while it is still wet, carefully placing it on the highway for his neighbors to run over, before he fires it in his kiln.