200-Year-Old ‘The Year Without Summer’ Focus of FSW Panel

Sep 27, 2016

Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW) will host “The Year Without Summer: A Panel Discussion” on Saturday, Oct. 8 at 1 p.m. in the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery on the Thomas Edison Campus.

FSW English/Honors Professor Marty Ambrose joins internationally-acclaimed artist Keith Edmier and New York University’s (NYU) Dr. Karen Holmberg on an interdisciplinary panel discussing the bicentennial of “The Year Without Summer,” a global climate anomaly in 1816 resulting from the eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia.

Ash from the eruption spread across the Northern Hemisphere causing cooler than average temperatures, higher rainfall, and gloomy skies, which resulted in the failure of crops, disease and famine. The weather that year was also said to have inspired Mary Shelley to write a short story that later would become “Frankenstein.”

Ambrose, the author of eight published novels and a professor at FSW for three decades, specializes in British Romanticism. While writing her latest novel, “Claire’s Last Secret,” set in 1816, she found that Tambora was a central symbol of the interconnectedness of nature, people and generations in that time period.

Edmier, whose exhibition “Edison Impluvium” ran in the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery from December 2015 to February 2016, used actual ash from the eruption in a 2010-2014 sculpture on the anomaly.  Dr. Holmberg, a visiting archaeology professor from NYU, is a self-proclaimed “volcano fetishist” who focused her doctoral research on disaster, perception, and environmental change over human history.

Learn more at www.RauschenbergGallery.com or by calling (239) 489-9313.

Events at the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at FSW are free and open to the public. The gallery is on the Thomas Edison Campus at 8099 College Parkway in Fort Myers. Gallery hours are Monday – Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Closed on Sundays and Holidays (including FSW Spring Break from March 7-13).

About The Bob Rauschenberg Gallery:

The Bob Rauschenberg Gallery was founded as The Gallery of Fine Art in 1979 on the Lee County campus of Florida SouthWestern State College/FSW (then Edison Community College).  On June 4, 2004 the Gallery of Fine Art was renamed the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery, to honor and commemorate our long time association and friendship with the artist.  Over more than three decades until his death, the Gallery worked closely with Rauschenberg to present world premiere exhibitions including multiple installations of the ¼ Mile or Two Furlong Piece.  The artist insisted on naming the space the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery (versus the “Robert Rauschenberg Gallery”) as it was consistent with the intimate, informal relationship he maintained with both our local Southwest Florida community and FSW.