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So Long, Bert

by Published on
Houston artist Bert Long, Jr.
Houston artist Bert Long, Jr.

The Houston Chronicle has the news of artist Bert Long’s death today, at age 72, of pancreatic cancer.

Working in paint, sculpture, photography, and public space, Long was a Houston fixture whose influence suffused the state, and whose reach was international.

Houston PressKelly Klaasmeyer had a nice partially biographical piece on Long’s 2006 Museum of Fine Arts Houston show here.

At the time of Long’s death, Houston’s Menil Collection was planning to screen the film A Valentine for Bert Long on Feb. 14 at 7 p.m., and Houston Baptist University was set to open an exhibition of Long’s work on Feb. 28 at HBU’s Contemporary Art Gallery.

There will doubtless be further tributes and homages as word spreads that the state has lost one of its brightest lights.






Houston native, 7th-generation Texan and Rice University graduate Brad Tyer has contributed to the Observer under five editors since the mid-1990s, including stints as freelance critic, contributing writer, interim editor, and two rounds as managing editor, from early 2008 to late 2009 and late 2012 to present. In the interim he's served as the Observer's long-distance copy editor. A former staffer at the Houston Press, former editor of the Missoula, Montana Independent , and widely published freelance (High Country News, New York Times Book Review, Public News, Texas Monthly, The Drake, Thora-Zine, etc.), Brad has been awarded a 2010 Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship at the University of Michigan, a 2011 Fishtrap Writing Residency, and a 2011 grant from the Fund for Investigative Journalism to support research for his first book, Opportunity, Montana: Big Copper, Bad Water, and the Burial of an American Landscape, published by Beacon Press in 2013. Brad oversees the Observer's cultural coverage.

  • stormkite

    It’s a serious loss for the art world and for Texas, Houston in particular. Bert was one of those wonderful folk who filled a room just by walking into it. Wherever he’s gone, it’s more interesting than it was.

  • austin888

    Met him once and he made a huge impression on me. What a great presence! Warm, gentle, full of life. He’s going to be sorely missed.