#1 : Artist's Cabin
Artist’s Cabin in Polebridge, Montana
Owner: Peter Moore / Designer: Peter Moore / Builder: Peter Moore
“With prejudice, I will say my space in the woods is the best place in the world.”
40 years ago, on his Grandfather’s homestead property near the Canadian border of Montana, Peter Moore took to the woods to “re-homestead” the 160 acre piece of land. After an extensive search for the perfect site, Peter designed and built a small cabin over the course of 3 years.
It takes time to get to Peter’s cabin. The driveway is made up of two dirt tire tracks, winding through a canvas of trees dappled with sunlight. As you approach the house the sky opens up to a beautiful view of the Rocky Mountains… his search for the perfect site paid off. The cabin is a simple gable, small, and made entirely of lumber from the site. A covered front porch comes off of the entry door, stepping down to perennial gardens and a rock patio, all crafted by Peter himself. The exterior cabin walls are lined with brightly painted clay masks. They made me smile as I imagined them welcoming me to his home.
The masks are just a precursor for the art and energy that fills Peter’s space. The moment you open the solid wood door, you are met with a contrasting feeling of ease and sensory overload. Peter’s cabin is not just a home, it is an art studio and gallery. The 650 sf cabin is one room with a wooden ladder leading up to a sleeping loft. There is not much space in the cabin and my guess is that 75% of it is covered in artwork.
“Paintings are always shifting around, looking for attention.”
The paintings are on display for visitors although they seem to be keeping him company as well. The few artless nooks are peppered with cassette tapes, books, and necessities.
The subject and color of his paintings add a unique energy and joy to the space. Wood is the dominant material of the space, as the posts, beams, and walls are all round log. Flat wood planks line the ceiling between support beams unless skylights have taken their place. Light pours in through large windows near the wood stove, where Peter has his easel. The mix of raw materials and natural light gives the space a strong sensory connection to the outdoors, providing joy to those inside.
The qualities of the space evoke comfort in every way - thermally warm, cozy in scale, raw materials, rich in textures, and natural light that is diffused yet radiant. After meeting Peter, it is obvious that the space is a direct translation of him - warm, inviting, and genuine.