Bernard Chaet, the former chair of the Yale Art Department who had been with the University for nearly 40 years, died Tuesday. He was 88.

Before serving as chair, Chaet taught painting and drawing at the University until he retired in 1990. He was known for his technical teaching style and was considered “the anchor around which the basic programs were offered in drawing and painting,” colleague Richard Lytle said.

“Bernie was someone who taught art to so many people at Yale in so many different disciplines and showed that there is critical thinking involved in art,” said Samuel Messer ART ’82, the associate dean of the art school.

Chaet’s pieces can be found in the collections around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and American Academy of Arts and Letters.

He is survived by his wife, Ninon, daughter Leia, and his two granddaughters.