Former Memphis Brooks director Kaywin Feldman's prefab weeHouse in Minneapolis

The Wall Street Journal's Homes section catches up with Kaywin Feldman, the former director of the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, to take a look at the home she shares in Minneapolis with her husband, architecture professor Jim Lutz. While in Memphis, the couple had fixed up the striking Seagle house on Poplar across from Overton Park. Looking around for something similar modern in the Twin Cities, Feldman made an interesting choice:

When Kaywin Feldman moved here to take a job as the director of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, she knew it would be difficult to replace her home in Memphis. Designed by a student of famed architect Louis Kahn, it was a 1950s-built midcentury modern that she and her husband, Jim Lutz, an architecture professor, had worked to restore and improve over nine years.

After looking at nearly 30 homes, Ms. Feldman finally found another modern house with a boxy exterior and glass walls. But this one had a different provenance. Constructed five years ago in a Wisconsin factory and installed in a few weeks on-site, it was a "weeHouse," one of a series of prefabricated homes designed by local architects Geoffrey Warner and Scott Ervin of Alchemy Architects.

At 2,900 square feet, the four-bedroom, three-bathroom house is one of the largest of the series--the couple jokingly refer to it as their "not so wee house." Located in the Linden Hills neighborhood, which is lined with more-traditional early 20th-century homes, the house is made up of four glass-and-cedar modular units stacked just slightly off-center, with small cantilevers, topped by a flat roof.

The couple say they like the low upkeep of the weeHouse compared with their architecturally significant fixer-upper in Memphis. They're also enjoying more privacy these days:

For the glass wall overlooking the street, Ms. Lutz insisted on installing window coverings, strung on simple hospital-track metal fixtures, for privacy. At their previous home, which overlooked a city park, "I would sometimes have someone come up to me and say, 'Oh, I saw you getting a book off the shelf,' " she recalled. "I said, 'When we move here, I want drapes and I want them now.' "

Don't miss the slideshow with pictures of the interior and the exterior of the weeHouse.


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