Eden´s Edge

An office located in the Californian desert. The self-imposed objective is no less far out: narrative landscaping. Its abbreviation is “O.N.L.S.D”, which includes what is pretty obvious, being on LSD. But Eden´s Edge is a nine-part episodic film from the Office for Narrative Landscape Design initially marked by exceptional directorial sobriety. The visual settings for the life-stories it presents are based on a shared and stringently maintained master-plan. We see bird eye-views of minimalistic scenes, meticulously arranged in gray desert sands, usually furnished with but a few props. Within this context, seemingly lost and barely insect-size inhabitants move about, recluses, mavericks and freaks in the best sense of the word. They all have retreated to the desert, to reinvent their lives on the margins of an increasingly unbearable society: the schizo-schaman who has constructed a totem circle out of stones; a female artist who fled the city and created a repository for the traumas of combat veterans; the paranoid druggee who inscribes a giant spiral along classical lines of land art. As they ploddingly drag themselves through the sunstruck backdrop, we hear their voices persistently tell of their fates – in sum, a densely woven patchwork of unconventional modes of existence. In the last episode, a French anthropologist reports how his Austrian friends inspired him to erect the O.N.L.S.D with them, here at the site of a “lost airport”. The resulting “storyscape test site” contains structural elements of the other stories. And so the frontier dream, in convoluted self-reference, begins to dream itself. Rarely have the borders of the idyllic been so concisely fathomed, rarely have the places of retreat remaining for non-conformists been pinpointed so precisely. (Christian Höller) Translation: Eve Heller -> see also sort version: Eden´s Edge (Three Shorts from the Californian Desert)

More Texts

AWARD FOR THE BEST FEATURE FILM / Poznan, Animator 2015 (Award)

We award “Best Feature Film” to Eden´s Edge by Gerhard Treml and Leo Calice. Eden´s Edge embodies the spirit of the Animator Festival in its furthering the form of animation. Treml and Calice have created a richly generative work through minimal means. The nine vignettes of Eden´s Edge, with their spare compositions presented from a distant visual perspective coupled with distinct first-person monologues in accompanying sonic environment, evoke contemporary modes of observation and accumulate into a deeply expansive cultural portrait.
EDEN´S EDGE, Gerhard Treml, Leo Calice, Austria, USA, 61 min
Orig. Title
Eden´s Edge
Austria, USA
61 min
Essay, Documentary, Animation
Orig. Language
O.N.L.S.D, Leo Calice, Gerhard Treml
Concept & Realization
Gerhard Treml
Supported by
The Austrian Science Fund, FWF, The University of Applied Arts, Vienna
Available Formats
DCP 2K flat (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
Sound Format
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
Digital File (prores, h264)
Festivals (Selection)
Boucheon - BIAF Animation Film Festival (Jury Special Prize for Feature Films)
Annecy - Festival Int. du Cinema d'Animation
Izola International Film Festival Otok Cinema
Poznan - Animator, Int. Animation Film Festival (AWARD FOR THE BEST FEATURE FILM)
Zagreb - 25fps Film & Video Festival (Critic´s Award + Audience Award)
Rotterdam Architecture Film Festival
München - UnderDox, Festival für Dokument und Experiment
Marseille - RISC Rencontres Int. Sciences et Film
Budapest - Anilogue Animation Film Festival
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des österreichischen Films
Barranquilla - FICBAQ
Tokyo - Georama Animation Fim Festival
Copenhagen - VOID Int Animation Festival
Nicosia - Images and Views of Alternative Cinema