V.M.S. Kaufmann House
Address: 20 Park Lane
Construction Date: 1935-36
Architect: Wessel, Brunet & Klein
Architectural Style: International
Historic Use: Private Residence
Current Use: Private Residence
Date of Local Designation: 1987
Date of National Register Designation: N/A
Area(s) of Significance: Architecture
Period of Significance: 1935-
Historic Profile: Influenced by the examples of modern architecture at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1933, V. Mel Kaufmann was determined to build an International style house. He hired architect James Brunet, a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota, to design a home that would capture the theme of "progress" on the shores of Cedar Lake. Surrounded by traditional homes, the modern design with its stucco exterior and flat roof stands out for its architectural distinctiveness. It evokes Le Corbusier’s idea of a house as a "Machine for Living" where all superfluous ornamentation is stripped away. Architect Brunet used the latest advances in plumbing, materials and equipment throughout the house. Having been in the first class to be schooled in the "modern design," Brunet designed a prime example of the latest trends in architecture. After the house was built, professors from the University would have bus loads of students come for field trips.
2006, Minneapolis CPED
"National Register of Historic Places – Nomination Form," December 1983.
Last updated Nov. 22, 2011