Katakouzenos House Museum


The Katakouzenos House Museum project deals with the revival of an historical Athenian house from a residential venue to a community-oriented and education-based institution, following the principles and expanding the possibilities of house museums. The former owners of the house, Angelos and Leto Katakouzenos, belonged to the intellectual elite of their times, the so-called “1930s generation,” and functioned as cultural ambassadors of their country abroad and arbiters of international tendencies to Hellas. The Katakouzenos House Museum belongs to a specific group of museums known as the house museums.

The Katakouzenos house functioned since 1960 as a literary salon; its rooms have hosted many visitors of international fame, mainly artists but also writers and poets; it also contains a representative collection of works by the most important artists of the so-called Hellenic “1930s generation,” and by many international artists, too.

Angelos Katakouzenos was born in 1904 in Lesvos, an island in the Aegean. He graduated with honours from the famous Evangelical School in Smyrna, on the western coast of Asia Minor. He went to France, where he studied medicine in Montpellier and in Paris. After ten years abroad, he refused proposals to work in France and the United States and returned home to Greece. A little later he met Leto Protopappa and married her in 1934.

Though he was a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Paris, a Member of the French Academy and a Commandeur de la Légion d’Honneur, he was never fully acknowledged for his worth in his own country. He gained the love of his patients and of the Hellenic public, but remained outside the academic establishment and gained little official renown. However, his legacy did survive thanks to the biography written by his wife, Leto, and continues through the work of the Angelos and Leto Katakouzenos Foundation.

Since 2008, the Katakouzenos House museum has been providing members of the cultural scene with a protective but also captivating environment through which they can promote their work. During that time the KHM has hosted hundreds of events, many of which free of charge for the visitors, and has received more than 20,000 guests.

Further to its art-related activities, the Katakouzenos Foundation has been supportive to society-related causes such as the effort to increase the number of bone marrow donors, and the need for culture spaces to be friendlier to people suffering from dementia. The Foundation has also tried to raise society’s awareness on the issue of homeless people by producing a publication that received the auspices of the President of the Hellenic Republic, Ms. Aikaterini Sakellaropoulou.

Ιt is important to note that the Foundation’s work is the product of the voluntary effort undertaken by members of its board.

Finally, the house of Angelos & Leto Katakouzenos has opened again its doors to the public thanks to the people who believed in its magic tale, and all of you who keep visiting it. We sincerely hope that the voyage it offers to its visitors is worthy of its history.