BORN: 1922 in Chicago, IL
DIED: 2004 in Glendale, WI
Simon Kops was a talented sculptor and teacher in the Milwaukee area for more than 50 years.
Born and raised in Chicago where he attended the Institute of design, he received a B.A. and did graduate work. He did further study at the Art Institute of Chicago and the New Mexico School of Mines. He studied under Moholy-Nagy and Archipenko.
He served in the Army in Europe during World War II and survived the Battle of the Bulge.
When he returned from the war he married Gerry Drury in 1948 and they eventually had two daughters. Simon and Geraldine lived in Whitefish Bay and later in Glendale. They both passed in 2004 - just four days apart! Simon was 82.
Although trained as an industrial designer, he pursued a career as an artist and teacher.
Kops came to Milwaukee in 1949 and became an instructor at the old Layton School of Art. He went on to teach at Mount Mary College, Milwaukee Area Technical College, Milwaukee and Whitefish Bay schools and Cardinal Stritch College.
He welded whimsical sculptures out of metal in his basement studio in Whitefish Bay. They often depicted human and bird forms which he regarded as a symbol of freedom. He also produced beautiful pieces of welded jewelry.
One critic said his works hugged the haunting narrow path between humor and pathos. Kops himself once put it more simply. "These sc...