Inspired by his passion for martial arts and Japanese culture, Peter Janssen acquired his first katana over thirty years ago and has been collecting samurai artefacts ever since. Today, his extensive collection comprises more than 4.000 objects. They date from the late Kofun to the early Meiji period (6th - 19th centuries) and offer a captivating insight into the evolution of Japanese culture and craftsmanship. The size and scope of the collection is unique. It includes not only weapons and armour, but also objects of samurai culture, such as textiles, paintings, woodblock prints, tea utensils and Buddhist sculptures.
Highlights of the collection are an 18th-century palanquin, 17th-century armour of the Matsuidara clan and tea utensils from the period of Sen no Rikyū (1522–1591).
In 2017 Peter Janssen opened the Samurai Art Museum in Villa Clay, with the desire to share his passion and fascination for these exceptional examples of traditional Japanese craftsmanship. Only a few years later, the continuous growth of the collection required a new location, which was found in Auguststraße in Berlin Mitte. Peter Janssen envisioned the new museum as a journey of discovery. Therefore, he chose to employ the latest technological innovations in museal presentation and exhibit display in order to offer visitors an immersive experience into the world of samurai.