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Services today for sculptor Heri Bert Bartscht
By Mark Miller, The Dallas Morning News
11 March 1985
Services for Heri Bert Bartscht, a noted sculptor who helped set up the sculpture program at the University of Dallas in Irving, will be at 11 a.m. Monday at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Dallas.
Mr. Bartscht, 77, died Wednesday morning at his Dallas home after a five-year struggle with Parkinson's disease. The artist is best known for his works that grace many Dallas-Fort Worth area churches and corporate buildings, said his son, Martin Bartscht of Dallas.
In 1988, he designed the bronze stations in the cross for the sanctuary of St. Rita Catholic Church at the corner of the Dallas North Tollway and LBJ Freeway. He also created the life-size statue of Christ at St. Rita's Catholic Church in Fort Worth.
“His trademark was the hands,” Martin Bartscht said. ”Powerful hands was something he always enjoyed adding to his artwork when appropriate.”
In 1966, Mr. Bartscht designed a sculpture, The Graduate, that is still on display in front of the library at Texas A&M University in College Station.
Mr. Bartscht also designed several metal sculptures for the porte-cochere of one of Dallas' first high-rise apartment buildings at 3525 Turtle Creek Blvd.
“He came from the old school,” said Jim Cinquemani, a Dallas metalworker who apprenticed with Mr. Bartscht in the 1960s at the age of 17. “There were certain requirements he had to meet. If a sculpture had three sides that were beautiful, but the fourth side wasn't, it was a failure.
Bartscht - 1948
“He believed the creative process isn't something that just falls out of your head, but it's something you have to do deliberately.”
Mr. Bartscht graduated from the Munich Academy of Fine Arts in Germany before immigrating to the United States in the early 1950s with his wife, Waltraud. She was a fashion designer in Dallas.
In 1952, Mr. Bartscht began work at the University of Dallas, developing the school's undergraduate and graduate sculpture curricula. He taught several art classes before retiring in 1990.
“One of his favorite classes was anatomy and figure drawing,” his son said. “That was one of the classes he was the most proud of.”
Mr. Cinquemani, who attended the University of Dallas, said Mr. Bartscht was loved by his students. He was “the rock” they turned to when they needed guidance, the former apprentice said.
Porte-cochere - 3525 Turtle Creek
“He really brought discipline into my life at a time when I really needed it,” Mr. Cinquemani said. “Teenagers are rebellious, and he was able to channel that energy into something creative.”
Mrs. Bartscht also taught at the university. She was chairwoman of the foreign languages department for 14 years before dying of arteriosclerosis in February.
Mr. Bartscht founded the Dallas Society of Contemporary Arts. He was also active in many German cultural organizations. He was a member of the Dallas Goethe Center and a founder of the German Day celebration in Texas.
His son is the only member of his immediate family to survive him.
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