Kevin Jerome Everson has made an expansive body of work composed of over seventy short-form pieces and five feature-length films that present images of the lives of black Americans through his own distinctive practice of cinematic portraiture: a blend of fiction and documentary that hones in on subjects of labor and leisure. His latest feature, Quality Control, looks at the workings of an Alabama dry cleaner’s from every angle of operation, from its machine-filled back room to the front-desk interaction with customers. For his long, uninterrupted takes, Everson uses complete rolls of black-and-white 16mm stock, lending the film an air of historical certitude while subtly undermining its truth claims. Keenly observational, Quality Control reveals the hidden choreographies of an average workday, arguing for the inherent art of a job well done.
Kevin Jerome Everson’s work is being screened in the Museum’s second floor film & video gallery May 23 through 27.