Marilyn Ganss, an artist whose fine art portraits of Long Beach Island houses hang in many year-round homes, died at Seacrest Nursing Home, Little Egg Harbor Township, May 25. She was 90.
A full-time resident of Harvey Cedars until moving to assisted living in 2018, she also provided illustrations for two decades for Long Beach Island's Beachcomber newspaper. Her oil paintings of bay and beach scenes were featured in gallery shows at Jane Law Art Studios in Surf City.
Marilyn grew up in Union, NJ and graduated from the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts with a degree in fashion design. She began working for a Short Hills advertising agency in the late 1950s, where she wowed everyone with her quick and witty illustrations.
Born March 10, 1931, Marilyn Staufenberger married Albert Ganss and moved to New Providence and then Cherry Hill, where they raised their two children, Leslee and Albert. The couple loved shore life, rented in Harvey Cedars for many years, and in 1974 purchased an oceanside home on Bergen Avenue. It became their year-round home in 1979.
She encouraged art as a way of life for her children and also shared a deep respect for nature and all living things. No bugs would be squished, all life was to be respected, and if you could paint it and share it all the better. "my children are my greatest works of art," she would say.
Marilyn could be found painting in her sunny studio in the back of her house with a view of the ocean and dunes. She loved a glass of white wine with family and neighbors, and would park her chair right on the edge of the water near the jetty on Bergen Avenue beach. We will miss her humor, immense talent, and love of all things furry and feathered.
She is predeceased by her husband, Albert, a professional engineer, who in his retirement certified pilings for new homes and worked as a Realtor at Island Realty. She is survived by her daughter Leslee (Ray Fisk), son Albert (Lisa Pieretti), and grandson Noah Fisk.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine, NJ.
Family services will be private.
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