Interview with Ronny Quevedo

The Laundromat Project commissions awesome New York City artists to make special edition prints and design merchandise. The sale of these items helps The LP bring fun, accessible, community-responsive arts programming to laundromats and other public spaces across the city. To purchase a print or tote bag, please click here.

Tell us about your LP commissioned print.

Made with shoe polish and ink, this print comes from a series of shoe polish drawings entitled be(tunes).

I am addressing the issue of immigration and history. By looking at the course of events that have led to the make-up of my community, there is a better understanding of how we connect to those moments and each other, especially through music and language.

The city of Potosí, Bolivia was a major source of capital in the world during the colonization of South America and conquest of the Inca empire. By abusing its indigenous population and African slaves, the city gained its wealth from silver mining. Coming from Ecuador, its important to understand the lineage of struggle that influences migrations of people affected by these events.

By chanting the name of the city Potosí, Bolivia, its invocation provides an intersection of past and present struggles. The city’s history of colonization is paired with existing vernacular for police and other meanings through this sound. Chanting, like other forms of music, shows how the role of improvisation is a way to re-define and present current conditions.

Why do you care about the issue you chose to focus on for this print?

New York City is made of neighborhoods that offer diverse histories of migration. These intersections often come from moments of struggle, such as colonization, war or police brutality. These histories are valuable and allow for new meanings. Yet, they also offer new direction through re-invention and re-purposing of materials.

What inspired you to support The Laundromat Project?

I have known of The LP since its founding. I’ve always felt the use of a local laundromat to support public projects is an inventive venue for social art practice. By activating a local resource, the art projects proposed are more conscious of a neighborhood’s make-up.

What’s your neighborhood?

I’m currently at the Core Program Residency in Houston, Texas. But grew up in the Bronx, NY.

What’s your favorite New York song, poem, movie or novel?

La Bodega Sold Dreams, by Miguel Piñero.

What’s your favorite sound, texture or color?

A sub-woofer at full blast.

What are you reading now?

This is How You Lose Her, Junot Diaz.

What your favorite thing about printmaking?

You can print it again.

What are you working on now?

Large drawings of basketball courts.

Check out Ronny’s special edition print on the Shop page.