John Peter Reis (1914 - 1987)

Birth date: 10/5/1914 Death date: 1987  
Birth location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin Death location:  
Media: Design , Painting , Sculpture Web site:
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John Peter Reis

Born, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1914

Died,West Bend, Wisconsin, 1987

A graduate of South Division High School, Milwaukee State Teachers College and the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, John Reis spent his life pursuing a wide variety of interests. Following graduation from college, he moved to West Bend to become the art instructor at McLane School. He later taught art at West Bend High School for four years before becoming a designer for Amity Leather Products in West Bend in 1943. With his wife, Gloria, he moved to Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin and advanced to the position of chief designer and plant manager for Amity. In 1962, the family moved back to West Bend and Reis was named vice-president of the creative department for the company.

John Reis’s watercolor and oil landscapes captured the character of the rural  landscape near West Bend in the 1960’s. Also an accomplished sculptor, he created figurative works from wood. Blessed with a fine tenor voice, he performed with renowned entertainers while still a student. During his years in West Bend and later in retirement in Naples, Florida, he sang as a soloist in church choirs. Before he retired to Florida in 1977 with his second wife, Gladys, he served on the advisory board of the West Bend Gallery of Fine Arts.


1972    American Designer of the Year from Leather Industries of America

© 10/09/2007 Museum of Wisconsin Art, West Bend, Wisconsin                               6/2/2010

Wisconsin Affiliations

Wisconsin Art Organizations

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