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In Eastern Oregon is a ranch that has made a reputation for itself as a success story in favor of sustainable farming practices and as an All-American ranch producing All-American wool. If you haven’t heard of them, check out this video about Imperial Stock Ranch and their contribution to the 2014 Winter Olympics. Aside from this brief account of their accomplishments, the Imperial Stock Ranch served as a type of precedent and site for this summer studio’s project: a Wool Production Facility (now featured in the updated version of my portfolio)
The following are some of my site visit photos that chronicle the All-American visit taken to this All-American ranch this past All-American summer.
Unlike Eugene and Portland, this part of Oregon is incredibly hot and dry. In fact, Eastern Oregon is mostly a high desert ecosystem and climate.
In the rolling plains near Shaniko, Oregon, the sun-bleached structures of Imperial Stock Ranch lean and weather with age.
Simply typing the word “Ranch” reminds me of the picturesque beauty present at the property. This ranch was filled with a romanticized sense of Americana found in any part of the country where old things are still good.
The ranch is home to cattle, sheep, horses, dogs,cats, and whatever wild-animals seek shelter in the shade of the old barns.
In the valleys, protected from the wind are tall, old, untamed trees that reach up towards the sky.
The buildings are old. Their construction technique is of another time.
Equipment is scattered across the property and furnishes the outdoors like sculpture.
The textures of the area are unmistakable earth tones, mixed with Cobalt skies. With human intervention comes colors of a different nature.
On the property is the original home of the settler who founded the Imperial Stock Ranch.
And in the shadow of this historic home was the highlight of the trip:
This little University of Colorado Fan.
I think there’s always been a part of me that fantasized about being a rancher. There is something so attractive about being miles from civilization and working the land for a living.
But I guess Architecture is cool too…