{Netherlands} The Katten Kabinet

November 13, 2013


It seems that cat museums are a little like buses. First none come along for a while, then two turn up at once. And so it happened, that I recently visited my second cat museum this year!

katten kabinet entrance sign

Both museums house private collections, were founded by cat lovers, and have the owners living in the same building on a different floor. But whereas the ‘Kleines Katzenmuseum‘ in Berlin is a centred around a collection of over 1000 porcelain cats, as well as cat collectibles in every other shape or form imaginable, the ‘Katten Kabinet’ in Amsterdam – founded in 1990 in memory of a ginger tom cat named J.P. Morgan – is an art museum devoted to works of art depicting cats.

katten kabinet stairwell and statue

katten kabinet great hall 001

katten kabinet great hall 002

The museum offers “a wide look at the role of the cat in art and in culture through the centuries” through its collection of paintings, drawings, sculptures and other works of art by Rembrandt, Picasso and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, among others. There are also a few other eclectic pieces, such as a costume from the musical Cats and a cat pinball table.

cat pinball machine

katten kabinet green room

The museum is about as idiosyncratic as they  come, but a definite must for any cat lover. And the building its located in, a restored 17th century canal house on Amsterdam’s historical Herengracht, with its lavish interiors is quite impressive in itself. You’d best stay away though if you are allergic to cats – J.P. Morgan’s successors are very much part of the ensemble.

katten kabinet small hall

katten kabinet cats

The Katten Kabinet is open daily, except for Christmas Day and a couple of other public holidays. Exact opening times, admission prices and address can be found on the museum’s website (under “Contact”), where you can also take a virtual tour of the building.

katten kabinet posters



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