Dave Porter, the Hexagon Project, and Music of Haiti

Dave and I were colleagues at Keystone College when I was an adjunct in Art Education and he was the coordinator of the Art Ed program, with many accomplishments as a graphic designer, visual artist, art therapist, and art educator for over 20 years. He has always demonstrated a real concern for social justice issues, which led him to find his mission in Haiti.

He inspired my art education majors to accompany him on his visits, and our connection to the Hexagon Project began at the time of the earthquake and the rebuilding of a most impoverished country. Our preservice teachers and a high school in Tunkhannock sent “Hexagons of the Heart” with Dave to give to Haitian children as signs of support and empathy. In turn, the Haitian children made art in response. This exchange became a feature article in School Arts Magazine (August 9, 2010).

Dave has also completed the “Pillar Art Project” installed at First Presbyterian Church in Clarks Summit, PA and has beautifully illustrated the children’s book Springtime Birds in My Backyard. Dave now resides in southeastern Pennsylvania with his wife and continues to advocate for the people of Haiti and for the arts.

Haiti suffers from the socio-political history of North America from colonialism and slavery to recent oppression by dictators, widespread corruption and violation of basic human rights. Recently retired from teaching, Dave’s most recent artistic efforts include the completion of the “Music and Mission of 2 Roots” documentary. We share the full documentary below as inspiration and an opportunity to enter into the world of the Haitian people today.

2 Roots playing their ballad, “Women.”

The music has deep social justice roots which speak to all humanity’s need for justice and equity. The first video contains a hauntingly beautiful plea for the just treatment of women by men. Other works speak to joy, celebration and the need for a truly democratic government and the self-sufficiency of the Haitian people.

Dave also provided the illustration accompanying the video for “Women!” that promotes awareness of violence against women.