Half-Dutch, half-Chinese, Catherina “Toto” Koopman was born in Java and educated in Holland and England.
Dutch Model and later Patron
1920's she was in Paris making a living as a showroom model for Chanel and Marcel Rochas.
Of those early days she said:
It really was another world. One dressed not to please men but to astound other women.
1934 Photographed by George Hoyningen-Huene 
had a bit part in Alexander Korda’s The Private Life of Don Juan.
After filming she stayed on in England where she had begun a short-lived romance with Max Aitken, son of Lord
Beaverbrook, who did everything he could to break it up.
Her war years are still mysterious: she is believed to have worked as a go-between for British intelligence in Italy.
Her cosmopolitan looks, multilingualism and contacts in Venetian society would have made her a prized asset. Eventually she
was betrayed and, on direct orders from Berlin, sent to Ravensbrück concentration camp.
For two years, working in the camp’s kitchens, she displayed great bravery by smuggling out food to the starving inmates and
intervened on behalf of prisoners selected for death.
1941 Dec. She was caught spying for the Allies in Italy and survived nearly four years at the Nazi concentration camp
1945 summer recuperating in Switzerland. The same year, in Florence, she met Erica Brausen.
Koopman moved to London and two women lived together until her death.
In his book The Sorcerer's Apprentice: Picasso, Provence, and Douglas Cooper; the art historian John Richardson (2001) 
states (pg 77)
Toto was interned in a camp outside Padua where she befriended Ingeborg and Lizzie Eichman and became the camp commandant's
mistress. The commandant offered to release Toto and set her up in a hotel. Toto agreed but only if the sisters were released
as well, and the commandant agreed
After the war, Toto Koopman returned to London and helped run the Hanover Gallery with her lover Erica Brausen (another
Together they nurtured the career of Francis Bacon, among others, giving him his first one-man show in 1949.
Erica and Toto created an outstanding residence on the island of Panarea, north of Sicily - Le Case
dei Sette Mulini, six white houses exquisitely interwoven with stunning terraces and descending gardens to the sea.