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In his absorbing short films, Kahlil Joseph conjures the lush and impressionistic quality of dreams with particular reverence for quotidian moments and intimate scenes.
Fly Paper (2017) is a film that touches on themes of filiation, influence, and legacy, marking a personal reckoning that intuitively calls upon his connections to the city through his family and in particular, his late father, whom he cared for in Harlem at the end of his life. Fly Paper’s dynamic yet contemplative mood also builds on Joseph’s sense that layers of lived experience and stories are sedimented in the places that have played host to the aspirations and daily lives of countless individuals.
Harlem’s renown as the epicenter of black culture in the US is at the heart of Fly Paper, which builds on an interplay of artistic forms as much as it engages Joseph’s relationship to the accomplished black community who call New York home. As a rich and polyphonic portrait of black art and culture in New York City, Fly Paper invites a meditation on the slippery nature of memory, reverie, and the photographic image.
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