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Auburn Mayor & Cayuga Museum Highlighting Hidden Artistic Treasures


A collaboration between Auburn’s mayor and the Cayuga Museum is shining a light on pieces from the museum’s art collection.

Executive Director of the Cayuga Museum of History & Art, Kirsten Gosch, told Finger Lakes News Radio the project, unofficially dubbed Executive Decisions, allows the mayor to select works from the museum’s collection for public display. She said it was about giving Mayor Jimmy Giannettino the freedom to choose pieces he personally connected with.

“We wanted him to be inspired and pick something that meant something to him,” Gosch said.

The artwork is prominently featured in the museum’s main gallery accompanied by a placard explaining why the mayor chose that specific piece. For his first pick, Giannettino selected a painting of the Auburn Golf & Country Club.

“The Auburn Golf & Country Club was an important part of a lot of Auburnians lives, especially blue collar working people who spent there summers up there,” Giannettino said. “A lot of memories were made there and it was an important part of our community so I thought it would be fitting for the first pick.”

The Auburn Golf & Country Club opened in 1916. The facility, under the name Lakeview Country Club, closed in 2023 after being sold to the West Lake Art Conservation Center.

Giannettino is no stranger to the museum’s art collection, having served on its Board of Directors prior to joining City Council in 2016.

If the collaboration is successful, Gosch explained that she sees no reason why it couldn’t be opened up to elected leaders throughout the county. She also hopes to see the project expand beyond paintings to include historically significant objects and more from within the museum’s collection.

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