A statement released by NASA and family members says Bean died Saturday, at the age of 86, in Houston Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas, after a short illness that struck him while traveling in Fort Wayne, Indiana, two weeks ago.
Leaving his footprints on a region called the Ocean of Storms, Bean in November 1969 became the fourth man to walk on the moon as one of the astronauts on the second of NASA's lunar landing missions, Apollo 12.
He retired from NASA in 1981 to embark on a third career as an artist, creating Apollo-themed paintings textured with lunar boot prints or using acrylics infused with small bits of his mission patches sprinkled with moon dust.
Four years after Apollo 12, Bean commanded the second crew to live and work on board the Skylab orbital workshop.
Twelve astronauts ultimately walked on the moon in six Apollo missions.
They spent about 7 hours and 45 minutes completing two moonwalks in which they deployed instruments to study the moon's geology, installed a nuclear generator to power future experimental equipment and collected an extensive assortment of moon rocks.
Bean's favorite theme was to depict astronauts in flight or on the lunar surface.
Many of Mr. Bean's fellow astronauts were evidently taken aback by his choosing the art world over private business.
According to NASA, Bean was commissioned as a U.S. Navy pilot in 1955, and he joined NASA's astronaut corps in 1963.
Schmitt, the lunar module pilot for Apollo 17, was one of many astronauts who mourned Bean's death and paid tribute Saturday to his accomplishments that blazed trails for future space exploration.
In 1998 NASA oral history, Bean recalled his excitement at preparing to fly to the moon. "But I've been there and I can tell you it's mostly black dirt".
He said: "I think a lot of it just had to do with it looked exciting".
Retired U.S. astronaut Scott Kelly said the world had not only lost "a spaceflight pioneer. but also an exceptional artist that brought his experience back to Earth to share with the world". "Thank you for letting me stand upon your shoulders".
"Alan was the strongest and kindest man I ever knew".
He leaves his second wife, Leslie, a son, Clay, and a daughter, Amy Sue, from his marriage to his first wife, Sue. "He was the love of my life and I miss him dearly", said Leslie Bean, Bean's wife of 40 years, in a statement. And for years, Alan and I never missed a month where we did not have a cheeseburger together at Miller's Café in Houston.