Margie Porter Watercolor Exhibit June, 2009

      Arizona native Margie Porter took a detour in her life from her art -- teaching students from Arizona to China before returning to explore her passion for painting. The Mesa artist had a solo exhibition in our Visitor Center art gallery at Boyce Thompson Arboretum for six weeks during June and July, 2009.

      "I was born in Mesa, and my love of nature and art were an important part of life from my earliest recollections -- in fact my favorite Christmas gift as a girl was a watercolor set.... and instead of going out to play with cousins and friends I stayed at home to paint," said Porter.

          "At age 12 I saved babysitting earnings and purchased my first oil painting set -- and had my first art lesson from a great aunt. I loved to study the lighting and contrasts and the affects of color in my aunt's paintings. Family outings and campout vacations gave opportunities to study nature and discover new subject matter for paintings."

     "I have always been fascinated by nature and its beauties, whether it was flowers or plant life, rocks -- insects with their intricate patterns and colors -- animals, fish, trees, mountains, streams and lakes. A short time out in nature renews me like nothing else," said Porter. "Much of my art is realistic, some is totally imaginary, some non-objective -- but even those pieces have an organic feeling of plant life and nature. It is the values, contrasts, spontaneity and color that express themselves strongest in my works."

          "The satisfaction of painting comes through problem solving, with watercolor being such an unpredictable and challenging medium," said Porter, who has illustrated two childrens books, won awards for her art, and exhibited solo shows at galleries including the Helen Spencer Schlie Gallery in Apache Junction, Myra’s Art Gallery in Pine, Imbue Gallery in Mesa, also at 21 West Gallery and Neighbors Garden Café) as well as art expos in New York and Las Vegas."

     "I attended just one year of college at Arizona State University before marriage, then while raising my four children I felt I needed to take some art courses. A life drawing class at Mesa Community College rekindled my love of art, which quickly mushroomed into returning full time as a student. My fifth child arrived the week before graduating with honors and an AA degree from Mesa Community College," said Porter, who returned to ASU to complete her her BA degree before teaching at Laloma Elementary School K-8 for a year while working towards her master's degree. The following year she was hired at Mesa High School as one of seven art teachers. "They had a terrific art program, from basic to accelerated -- this was the kind of program I would have enjoyed during my high school years."

       "While her art is centered in her Arizona experience, viewers can expect to see other influences from a year spent teaching at Qingdao University in China and other travels. "I enjoyed traveling throughout the country with camera in hand; I've also traveled throughout Europe and viewed original works by many of the great masters. I've traveled to Thailand, Egypt, Israel, Mexico, Alaska and Hawaii, and been on a Caribbean cruise stopping at Guatemala, Honduras, and other places. Travels have enriched my life, and given subject matter for paintings that should keep me busy for.... oh, how about the next hundred years?"."

         Works shown on this page are (clockwise from top left) "Fall Memories," "Day Before Yesterday." "Hidden Treasures," and "Brian Head." Prices ranged $250 to $1500. See more of Porter's art at
To contact the artist about purchases, commissions or assignments, email or call the artist at 480. 964. 5647

      Boyce Thompson Arboretum is at highway 60 milepost #223 near the historic copper mining town of Superior, a drive of about 45 minutes due East of Mesa. During June, July and August visitors are admitted from 6:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., and the Arboretum closes at 3:00 p.m. (during fall and winter months the schedule is daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) New exhibits begin each month and may be seen daily during business hours; the Arboretum is an Arizona State Park and daily admission must be paid to enter the Visitor Center where our gallery is found. Admission is $7.50 for adults and $3 for ages 5-12. Annual memberships at the Arboretum begin at $45, and include a year's access, guest passes for your friends and family, along with many other benefits. A membership may be purchased in the gift shop on the day of your visit. To review other recent gallery shows from...

Deborah A. Lee May, 2009
Mesa Arts League April, 2009

Bud Heiss March, 2009
Laurent Baig February, 2009
Timm Chapman January, 2009
Paul Kinslow December, 2008
Maggie Leef November 2008
Sharon Sieben October 2008
Nicole Royse September 2008
Gila Community College Art July-August 2008
Judy Bottler Photography May 2008
Bob Estrin Photography April 2008
Mary Isham Watercolors March 2008
Susan Strom and Cathy Franklin Lightning Photography February, 2008
Arizona State Parks Plein Air Paintings January, 2008
Carolyn Gray & Connie Thomas December, 2007
Jean Sullivan November, 2007 Sue Cullumber October, 2007
Adriane Grimaldi September, 2007
Pima College print-making students July-August, 2007
Mesa Arts League June-July, 2007
Fred Charlton May, 2007
Paul Mudersbach March-April, 2007
Linda Kaiser February, 2007
Edith Kreueger-Nye December, 2006 - January, 2007
Cindy Carrillo October-November, 2006
Bob Rice September, 2006
Bud Heiss July-August, 2006
Mesa Arts League June-July, 2006
Sandy Tracey April-May, 2006
CJ Rider March, 2006
Jessica Green February, 2006
Steve Davidson January, 2006
Don & Carole Schupp December, 2005
Carolyn Gray November, 2005
Martha Burgess October, 2005
Boeing Photographers September, 2005
Lightning Lady Susan Strom July/August, 2005
Mesa Arts League June/July, 2005
Jeanette Bronson May, 2005
Tom Stanley April, 2005
Kathy McClure February-March, 2005
Pam Smyth January, 2005
Tina Faust December, 2004