John Lautner - The Desert Hot Springs Motel

USA/Austria 2007, Documentary, 10' | Director, Realization Sasha Pirker

A sparse area about 150 kilometres east of Los Angeles is the location of the Desert Hot Springs Motel. The motel was built in 1947 to a design by architect John Lautner, whose UFO-like Malin Residence (aka the Chemosphere) is one of the icons of post-war American architecture. Like a potential guest being shown a room before deciding, the camera takes a quick look at the details: the concrete walls, the windows that open out to the garden, the roof's red iron trusses modelled on the shape of the nearby mountains and the lush vegetation. Meanwhile, the voice-over tells of writer Steve Lowe - who bought the motel in 2000, renovated it and started accommodating guests there - and of his adventuresome life.


SASHA PIRKER was born 1969 in Vienna. Having studied linguistics and architecture, she now works as an exhibition-maker and artist. John Lautner, The Desert Hot Springs Motel is Sasha Pirker's first film.

Sasha Pirker
USA, Austria
Documentary, Short Film