Maplewood artist Eric Beckerich passed away Friday at the age of 66 after a battle with cancer.
Eric was born on July 28, 1952, and grew up in the Bronx. He graduated from Memphis State University, where he received a B. F. A. in Painting and Sculpture. He lived in New York City and Hoboken for a number of years before moving to Maplewood with his family in 1997. He worked for many years as a designer, creating custom displays, exhibits and interiors and doing commissioned illustrations. A career change brought him into the construction industry as a project manager and, most recently, as a structural masonry inspector. He retired in 2015.
Eric returned to making art in 2007, an endeavor that brought him great joy. Working in mortar and mixed media, his work incorporated elements of architecture, painting, drawing and sculpture. He was a much-loved artist involved with 1978 Arts Center, Studio Montclair and Valley Arts. Eric’s large-scale sculpture, The Essex Column, is on permanent exhibit at the Wildflower Sculpture Park in South Mountain Reservation. Another large piece won First in Sculpture at a JCC Juried Show in Whippany. His work with mortar and found materials repurposed non-traditional elements and elevated them through the use of classic design strategies. Eric participated for many years in the Artist’s Studio Tour, and was a featured artist for Maplewood Library’s 2018 Ideas Festival.
Eric also loved playing and listening to music. He had a band that played in NYC in the 80s, and recently he played locally under the name Ronnie Beck. One of his greatest joys was playing his guitar and singing.
He also loved playing Scrabble, watching foreign films and vacationing on Long Beach Island with his wife Joanne. He was a lifelong Yankees fan, and thoroughly enjoyed reading Patrick O’Brian’s Auburey-Maturn novels, often sharing passages aloud.
Eric is survived by his wife Joanne (Gionti) and son Eric Jr. He is also survived by his siblings; his brothers David and Michael and his sister Wendy (Morrison).
He wanted everyone to know that he loved his life, his family and his friends. A visitation will be held at The Jacob Holle Funeral Home, 2122 Millburn Ave., Maplewood on Tuesday, October 2 from 5-8 pm, followed by a short service at 8:00 p.m.