What do Sonia Sotomayor, Jennifer López, Anthony Romero, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Mario Vázquez and Jon Oliva have in common? These Latinos called Bronx their home. So did Tito Puente, Prince Royce, Willie Colón and many others. I’ll throw in a couple of honorary Latinos such as Edgar Allan Poe, Marian Zazeela, Woody Allen, Neil Simon and Mark Twain to remind everyone there’s much more to the Bronx than Hip-Hop and overly exaggerated gesticulations, mainly produced by shenanigans showing their cheap underwear with copious amounts of unnecessary pride. And proud we Latinos should be of our next Bronx hero.
Hailing from the soon-to-be-gentrified, poorest congressional district in the contiguous United States, and headquarters of the unionized-corporate-sports-sanctuary better known as the Yankees Stadium, comes our next Latino Rebelde: Ronny Quevedo. This magnificent visual artist earned his MFA from the Yale School of Art and BFA from The Cooper Union. He has participated in residencies at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Project Row Houses, the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture, the Lower East Side Printshop, The Bronx Museum of the Arts and Aljira Contemporary Art Center. Impressive, right? So, when I heard about his latest exhibit, Home Field Advantage, I literally canceled my dinner date and ran to his opening reception in hopes to meet him, share a bottle of wine and have a chat.
Ronny Quevedo and his piece Cabeza Mágica
MF: This is your triumphant return to the Bronx. My condolences for being in Houston for so long…
RQ: [Loud laughter] Well, I was there for an artist residency called The Core Program. Before that I was doing my MFA at Yale University. I was away for a while.
MF: You did an MFA at Yale. WOW! How many Latinos were enrolled in an Arts MFA at Yale?
RQ: At the time there were probably 6, 7 of us in the whole arts program.
MF: 6 or 7 out of how many?
RQ: Around 60.
MF: So, it’s not a very diverse MFA program?
RQ: It felt like we had a good stake in the conversation, nevertheless. It’s a small group of people that come in and out. So, our conversation was entertained.
For the rest of the interview, click here