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The September Gallery will be on display September 1-30

FORT MYERS, FL (August 24, 2023) – Throughout the month of September, the Alliance for the Arts (AFTA) presents a juried exhibition in conjunction with its Storm Stories oral history program about Hurricane Ian and its aftermath. The show will feature 53 works of art from Florida artists. Artists were asked to create artwork about their experiences during or after the storm: The works may represent stories of resilience, trauma or loss.

Following Hurricane Ian, AFTA teamed up with the Gulf Coast Writers Association (GCWA) to launch the oral history project, Storm Stories, allowing people to submit personal stories of their experiences during and after the storm. Those collected stories have been compiled into a printed book, available for purchase at AFTA during the month of September. The book contains 80 stories of survival, loss, heroism, humanity and resilience by victims of Hurricane Ian.

“During September, AFTA is recognizing the resilience and spirit of Lee County and Southwest Florida in rebounding and recovering as a community,” said executive director Molly Rowan-Deckart. “This month-long exhibition of visual, oral and written histories of peoples’ experiences during the devastating storm demonstrates the healing power of the arts as the community comes back strong.”

Storm Stories events during September include:

  • September’s Exhibition will host a soft opening reception on September 1 from 5:00-7:00 pm. There will be a closing reception on September 28, from 5:00-7:00 pm, to mark and honor the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Ian making landfall. The closing reception will feature light refreshments, as well as authors, artists and event sponsors in attendance. 
  • Saturdays throughout the month – from 10:00 am-12:00 pm – will feature a free, 15-minute healing massage or Reiki to specified groups affected by Hurricane Ian: first responders (September 9); residents impacted by the storm (September 16); anyone who lost or suffered damage to their home or job (September 23); educators, and volunteers who helped in the aftermath of the storm (September 30). For more information or to reserve a spot, call the Alliance at 239-939-2787.
  • Saturday, September 16, is a monthly FREE Family ArtLab from 10:00 am-noon that will be focused on remembering and continuing to heal from Hurricane Ian. Children and families will participate in the creation of AFTA’s Resiliency Garden. Families can stay after Family ArtLab for a screening of the 2017 film Coco in the Theatre (admission is $2.00).
  • Saturday, September 23 from 11:00 am-2:00 pm will be a meditation workshop designed to be a fun-filled experience where participants explore the magic of breath work and creativity. The class is $60 for AFTA members and $75 for nonmembers. To find out more and register, visit

Selected Storm Stories Exhibiting Artists: 

Robert Allen, Stefanie Babb, Charles Baker, Laura Ball, Elita Barfield, Austin Bell, Linda Benson, Meagan Bonesteel, Laura Borror, Danielle Brant, Stacey Brown, Leslie Brunn, June Burke, Ramon Chirinos, Tracy Owen Cullimore, Sharyn Dahn, Dana Donkle, Marian Fuller, David Giansante, Julie Griffin, Sherry Haney, Sue Higgins-Ferrell, Peter Horan, Rose Jung, Jane Lane, Leoma Lovegrove, Pam Lowe, Doug MacGregor, Dave Mancini, Ying McLane, Susan Miller, Richard Plummer, Nanci Polomski, Dennis Porter, Carole Price, Ellen Prior, Josey Prior, Vickie Resor, John Rizza, Sharon Rodgers, Leah Schneider, Lynne Schwartz, Nancy Searle, Julie Siler Olander, Pat St. Onge, Dominick Tascher, Eric Taubert, Christopher Tuscan, John Warminski, Alex Wilkinson, and Deborah Zwetsch.

In the Theatre Gallery: Hope: The Other Side of Hurricane Ian by Kinfay Moroti 

Hope: The Other Side of Hurricane Ian by Kinfay Moroti shows how the deadly storm united people in the one thing that couldn’t be destroyed: Hope. Kinfay Moroti leads Hopeful Images – an initiative that helps organizations share their stories through photojournalism, messaging, and storytelling campaigns.

In the Member’s Gallery: Tamara Culp & Jodi Enders 

Tamara Culp moved from the high desert country of Colorado to Florida to be closer to water in 2015. Since childhood, water has held a special place in her heart as a sanctuary and a haven.

Jodi Enders has always been pulled toward exploration, a place where the constant running of the mind halts. She can enjoy simple pleasures and enrichment by analyzing the world on a deeper level than the average individual may grant themselves the time to do.

In the Foulds Theatre: For those of us who live at the shoreline by Sasha Wortzel

Sasha Wortzel is a visual artist and filmmaker using video, installation, sculpture, sound, and performance to explore how this country’s past and present are inextricably linked. Wortzel’s work is in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, Studio Museum of Harlem, Leslie Lohman Museum of Art, and Miami-Dade County Art in Public Places. Wortzel has been featured in publications including The New York Times, Artforum, Art in America, and New York Magazine.

Sponsors of September’s Storm Stories

PDS Architecture, LCEC, Knox Services, Wildcat Renovation, LLC. and Sanibel Air & Electric.

About Alliance for the Arts

The Alliance for the Arts is a nonprofit community visual and performing arts center located in the heart of Fort Myers, Florida. Since 1975, the Alliance has been committed to transforming lives and improving community through the arts. The Alliance campus and galleries are open to the public from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. Located at 10091 McGregor Boulevard just south of Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers. For more information, please call 239-939-2787, visit us at, find us on Facebook, Instagram or follow us on Twitter.

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