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Modern Off-the-Grid Retreat in Oregon

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The Watershed is an off-the-grid writer’s retreat that architect Erin Moore designed for her mother, nature writer Kathleen Dean Moore.

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  Though the retreat is clearly meant to afford the solitude writing so often requires, Kathleen reports that "it's very lively. Deer approach, birds bathe. The sun warms my desk and you can hear the rain."  Photo by: Gary Tarleton
    Though the retreat is clearly meant to afford the solitude writing so often requires, Kathleen reports that "it's very lively. Deer approach, birds bathe. The sun warms my desk and you can hear the rain."

    Photo by: Gary Tarleton

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  When she visits the Watershed, Kathleen's writing accoutrements are limited to paper and pencil.  Photo by: Gary Tarleton
    When she visits the Watershed, Kathleen's writing accoutrements are limited to paper and pencil.

    Photo by: Gary Tarleton

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  Erin Moore of FLOAT Architectural Research and Design, based in Tucson, Arizona, designed a 70-square-foot writer’s retreat in Wren, Oregon, for her mother, Kathleen Dean Moore, a nature writer and professor of philosophy at nearby Oregon State University. The elder Moore wanted a small studio in which to work and observe the delicate wetland ecosystem on the banks of the Marys River. Enlisting her daughter’s design expertise, her professor husband’s carpentry savoir faire, the aid of friends, and a front loader, Kathleen and her crew erected the structure in September 2007. Photo by Gary Tarleton. Totally off the grid—–Kathleen forgoes the computer and writes by hand when there—–the Watershed was designed to tread as lightly on the fragile ecosystem as the wild turkeys and Western pond turtles that live nearby. “  Photo by: Gary Tarleton

    Erin Moore of FLOAT Architectural Research and Design, based in Tucson, Arizona, designed a 70-square-foot writer’s retreat in Wren, Oregon, for her mother, Kathleen Dean Moore, a nature writer and professor of philosophy at nearby Oregon State University. The elder Moore wanted a small studio in which to work and observe the delicate wetland ecosystem on the banks of the Marys River. Enlisting her daughter’s design expertise, her professor husband’s carpentry savoir faire, the aid of friends, and a front loader, Kathleen and her crew erected the structure in September 2007. Photo by Gary Tarleton. Totally off the grid—–Kathleen forgoes the computer and writes by hand when there—–the Watershed was designed to tread as lightly on the fragile ecosystem as the wild turkeys and Western pond turtles that live nearby. “

    Photo by: Gary Tarleton

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  The prefab steel frame lightly touches the wood to prevent mold and mildew.  Photo by: Gary Tarleton
    The prefab steel frame lightly touches the wood to prevent mold and mildew.

    Photo by: Gary Tarleton

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