Goff in the Desert

Goff in the Desert

A film by Heinz Emigholz | 2003 | 110 minutes

An early seminal work beautifully restored, filmmaker Heinz Emigholz presents sixty-two buildings by the exceptionally inventive American architect Bruce Goff (1904-1982), who was apprenticed at age 12 but never formally educated as an architect. Goff’s work, mostly churches and private homes, attempts to combine the harmony of nature with the innovation of modern construction and display a unique style that sets it apart from most 20th century architecture. The Episcopal Church in Tulsa built in the 1920s is a towering Art Deco icon, while the Hopewell Baptist Church in Edmond resembles a strange futuristic concrete teepee challenging the landscape. Bruce Goff is the great unknown of an original American form of architecture. Through his photo-driven style, Emigholz brilliantly exposes details of Goff’s structures that might otherwise be missed.


“A classic architecture film.”
– Frieze Magazine

“Emigholz’s groundbreaking and spellbinding architectural films are, quite simply, cinematographic re-enactments of the immediate experience of spaces. With an often canted camera, he dissects the interior and exterior of a building, allowing the viewer to experience being there and, by studying a career of an architect, construct a biography solely based on the works, free of commentary.”
– Cinema Scope

“Heinz Emigholz is the world’s most acute observer of architecture.”
– Variety