About the Collection

Abraham Willet and his wife Louisa Willet-Holthuysen were passionate about art. Partly thanks to Louisa's fortune, they were able to build up a rich, varied collection of Venetian glass, silver and German porcelain. Abraham also collected weapons, rare art history books, photos and prints. Louisa was a lover of contemporary Dutch and French paintings. Abraham's collection of arts and crafts was particularly significant, receiving acclaim even during his lifetime. 

He maintained a 19th-century library specialising in the history of art. For a long time, this library was on loan to the Institute of Art History, part of the University of Amsterdam. At present, all his books have come ‘home’ and his collection has been divided between Museum Willet-Holthuysen and the Collection Centre of the Amsterdam Museum. The library will be restored to its former glory in the autumn of 2016, after which the museum collection will feature many more books. 

Museum Willet-Holthuysen is managed by the Amsterdam Museum. Thanks to Louisa Willet-Holthuysen's will (1895), the City of Amsterdam has had control of this significant private 19th-century collection for more than 120 years. A large part of it is on display in the museum in the original historical setting.

For more information about the collection of Museum Willet-Holthuysen and the Amsterdam Museum, click here.

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