By Noura Al Joaib
Discover Al Amriah Gallery, one man’s passion to capture the past.
There’s an old saying that goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Seeing beauty in the mundane and worth in the worthless, the late Mohammed Al Amer was, in every sense of the word, a treasure hunter.
Al Amer made it his life’s mission to explore and collect. His private collection, a culmination of many travels far and wide, is a wonder to behold and a reflection of his wanderlust and arcane sense of exploration.
Home to Al Amer ‘s prized collection, Al Amriah Gallery is located in the Rakah neighborhood of Khobar, surrounded by nondescript homes. The exterior of this home-turned-gallery is already teaser of things to come. Upon entering through the wide gate, you’re instantly welcomed by a canopy-like structure with labeled signage of face doodles illustrating the widest spectrum of human moods. It’s kitschy, sure, but never fails to draw smiles.
The gallery is distributed across 21 halls, varying in size and density. From money notes to musical instruments and miniature airplanes to vintage radio, there is something to marvel at for everyone. Situated in the garden area is one of the gallery’s most popular attractions: a dhow converted to a home for the ever-expanding treasure trove.
Another personal favorite is the hall containing semi-precious rocks of all shapes, from stones to slabs, all shipped (with extreme care) from across the globe. A collection of vintage telephones can also be found, most prized of which is a telephone handset that was once owned by former Egyptian president Anwar Al Sadat.
Al Amer was also a lover of film, particularly the golden age of Arabic films. This love has translated into a whole area dedicated to an extensive collection of movie posters and various camera equipment.
Al Amriah Gallery is the perfect place to get lost in and discover all its nooks and crannies. It’s a place to wander and wonder and a place to walk through history and behold the life of an explorer.