Tree House, 2016. Color, digital video, 8 minutes.
We (Laine and Walter) lived in a Berkeley student co-op with sixty people and made a film about the treehouse in our front yard. It sits in the branches of a tall redwood above a bustling Berkeley neighborhood. In the film, we interview Masha, Carli, Jesse, and Eric. Masha goes up there to meditate. She sits at the table, takes a long breath, and closes her eyes. Eric built the treehouse in the nineties. He remembers swinging from the branches to nail down framing sections. Jesse jokingly refers to the treehouse as “a place of sin,” full of latex, raccoons, and bedbugs. Carli loves to climb the tree. She met her current boyfriend there. They hung out in the branches and talked for hours. From the interviews, we learned that the treehouse is full of contradictions. It’s peaceful and dangerous, disgusting and romantic. We hope the film will inspire people to appreciate their own complex and sometimes contradictory surroundings.
Laine Dermer Kendall, B.A. Film and Media (2017)