UPCOMING: how to be a human being curated by Sara Nishikawa

Opening December 17th, 2020

Dec 17—Feb 12, 2021

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Reyes | Finn is pleased to present how to be a human being, a group exhibition of ceramic works by Anjuli, Nicole Cherubini, Joanne Greenbaum, and Patrice Renee Washington, curated by Sara Nishikawa. 

The four artists in how to be a human being, Anjuli, Nicole Cherubini, Joanne Greenbaum, and Patrice Renee Washington, recontextualize traditional ceramics to unpack mythologies of identity, history, and domesticity in relation to both craft and objecthood. From barber shop posters to steel rods, many of the featured works address the translation of the mundane into the symbolic, and confront the tenuous space between fine art and the everyday.

In a selection of over twenty works, the artists make use of materials and techniques that invoke traditional craft, where these conventions serve as points of departure to explore unorthodox instruments. Tile arrangements by Anjuli and Washington are evocative of domestic spaces such as kitchens and bathrooms: Anjuli’s stoneware vessels are accompanied by a matching tiled backdrop, while Washington’s ceramic bas-reliefs are an abstraction of racial signifiers that toy with modernist conventions of monochrome palettes and gridded layouts.  Known for her totemic assemblages of irregularly stacked materials, Cherubini likewise disrupts the form, function, and historical narrative of objects fetishized by society—such as the vessel—placing her sculptures in situations of authoritative precarity.

how to be a human being additionally features new works by Washington and Greenbaum, with both artists expanding on their languages of abstraction as mediated through social and material signifiers. In Seeds Black and Shining, Washington casts a bike lock-watermelon hybrid in stoneware, while Greenbaum presents several new porcelain and terracotta works—some glazed, others colored with marker.

“These artists are constantly pushing and pulling materiality between DIY and high craft, the functional and the decorative,” says curator Sara Nishikawa. “Whether they’re coloring porcelain with magic marker, suspending stoneware with rope, or sculpting terracotta with industrial materials, there is an element of playful irreverence to the hierarchies of the ceramic tradition that buoys their genuine love of the practice.”



Anjuli is a ceramic artist exploring binaries of symbol and identity through the lens of the vessel. Her practice is deeply rooted in the ritual of the studio, through constant production she creates a language through repeated gestures. After studying sociology at the University of San Diego, her interest in the creative process was sparked by working on community art projects with different populations in the U.S. and abroad. This inspired her to pursue her own practice and continue studies at San Francisco Art Institute, and then further to complete her MFA  at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI. Currently, she lives and works in New York, NY.



Nicole Cherubini received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design (Providence, RI), and MFA from New York University (New York, NY). Her work has been featured in solo exhibitions at institutions including the Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia, PA), the Jersey City Museum (Jersey City, NJ), the Nassau County Museum of Art (Roslyn Harbor, NY), the Pérez Art Museum Miami (Miami, FL), the Santa Monica Museum of Art (Los Angeles, CA), The Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery (Saratoga, NY) and University Art Museum (Albany, NY). She has participated in numerous group exhibitions at institutions including the Cranbrook Art Museum (Bloomfield Hills, MI), the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston (Boston, MA), the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kansas City, MO), MoMA PS1 (Long Island City, NY), Museo de Arte Raúl Anguiano (Guadalajara, México), the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston, MA), the Rhode Island School of Design Museum (Providence, RI), SculptureCenter (Long Island City, NY), the Studio Museum in Harlem (New York, NY), and the Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN), Forthcoming exhibitions include Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (North Adams, MA), Crystal Bridges (Fayetteville, AK) and Museo Rufino Tamayo (Mexico City, Mexico). Her work is held in numerous private and public collections, including the Cranbrook Art Museum (Bloomfield Hills, MI), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA), the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston, MA), the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston (Boston, MA), the Museum of Arts and Design (New York, NY), and the Pérez Art Museum Miami (Miami, FL) In 2019, Cherubini was an artist in residence at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (Boston, MA). Cherubini lives and works in Hudson, NY.



Joanne Greenbaum earned a BA from Bard College, Annadale-on- Hudson, NY. Over the past twenty years, Joanne Greenbaum has exhibited widely at international venues including at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; Kusthalle Düsseldorf, Dusseldorf, Germany; and MoMA PS1, New York, NY; among many others. In 2008, a career-spanning survey of her work, with the corresponding catalogue, was mounted by Haus Konstruktiv in Zurich, Switzerland and traveled to the Museum Abteiberg in Monchengladbach, Germany. In 2018, The Tufts University Art Galleries at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, MA mounted Joanne Greenbaum: Things We Said Today, a comprehensive solo exhibition that traveled to the Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, CA.

Greenbaum is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including The Gwendolyn Knight Lawrence Award from the Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, NY; The Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant; Artist in Residence at The Chinati Foundation, Marfa, TX; The Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant; and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Grant. Her work is included in the collections of the Brandeis Rose Art Museum, Waltham, MA; CCA Andratx, Majorca, ES; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Haus Konstruktiv Museum, Zurich, CH; Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; Museum Abteiberg, Monchengladbach, Germany; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA; The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; and the Ross Art Collection at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI. Greenbaum lives and works in New York.



Patrice Renee Washington is a New York based artist, born in Chicago, IL. Working primarily in sculpture and ceramics, her work investigates structures of race, class, and gender as they relate to the construction of identity and experience. Through use of objects and cultural signifiers she explores how identity can be manipulated and shaped to explore alternative understandings.

She has shown in solo and group exhibitions across the United States, including solo exhibitions at both Marinaro Gallery and Underdonk Gallery in Brooklyn, NY along with a 2018 solo museum exhibition at The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver.  Group exhibitions include shows at Jenkins Johnson Gallery, Brooklyn, NY;  We Buy Gold, Brooklyn, NY; Sculpture Center, Queens, NY; The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, Denver, CO; Zeitgeist, Nashville, TN; Abrons Art Center, New York, NY; 47 Canal, New York, NY and Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, Brooklyn, NY. She has been granted residencies at Abrons Arts Center, Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Lighthouse Works, the Museum of Art and Design, and the Vermont Studio Center. 



Reyes | Finn is a contemporary art gallery in Detroit, MI, established in 2017. Reyes | Finn reveals multiple exhibitions a year dedicated to emerging and mid-career artists. It is with such presentations that the gallery seeks to reveal a profile both internationally renowned and regional in dialogue. Collaborating with artists, patrons and institutions alike, the gallery hopes to continue to diversify and strengthen Detroit’s arts community.


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