Mural Adds Illusion in Au Sable Forks

People in Au Sable Forks, New York can enjoy a special view of the Au Sable River as it flows under a new bridge.   It’s a new mural one can view near Riverside Park.

The mural, recently unveiled between the Tahawus Cultural Center and the former Hollywood Theatre, stands just below the street level.  It creates the impression the river is flowing beneath Main Street under a bridge that doesn’t exist outside the painting.   

Tahawus Cultural Center Co-Directors Rebecca Kelly and Craig Brashear say they wanted a trompe l’oeil mural to bridge the gap between the two buildings.  Trompe l’oeil, meaning trick the eye, is a French term that signifies a highly realistic optical illusion.

Artist Georgeanne Gaffney of Saranac Lake, New York was selected to create the mural, as she had prior experience with art that creates an illusion.  

Spotlight producer Paul Larson spoke with the artist and community members about the new work of art.

Community foundations and individuals helped fund the “A Sense of Place” mural.  These include: 

Puffin Foundation

Statewide Community Regrants Program  

Charles R. Wood Foundation

Stewart’s Shops

Essex County Arts Council

Tahawus Cultural Center is located at 14234 State Route 9N in Au Sable Forks.  You may learn about upcoming activities at the center by visiting  You’ll find more information about the mural artist at

Spotlight is made possible, in part, by the Glenn and Carol Pearsall Adirondack Foundation, dedicated to improving the quality of life for year-round residents of the Adirondack Park.  Spotlight is also supported by Hill and Hollow Music.