Bahrain House of Photography

Country: Bahrain
Collection Type: Private collection
Collection Size: > 50,000
Period: 1960-1980Later than 1980
Type of Material & Format: Black and White imagesColour imagesDigital filesFilm-based negatives

The photo archive of Bahrain House of Photography, a business owned by photographer Abdulla Mohammed Al Khan, comprises three archives: The archive of his father, photographer Mohammed Al Khan (that includes photographs dating back to 1939), part of the archive of the Bahrain Petroleum Company BAPCO (founded in 1929) and his personal archive since 1950.

Abdulla Mohammed Al Khan father, “Mohammed Al Khan” studied photography in India. After his return from India in 1938 he set up a photography studio at his home in Muharraq, from which he managed his business in developing photo negatives and making prints of them. Abdulla Al Khan joined Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO) as a trainee photographer. Because of his noticeable skills and performance, BAPCO sent him on a scholarship to “Ealing Technical College’, London to study photography. His specialty was the photography of installations, structures and buildings. He returned to Bahrain and continued to work for BAPCO to become head of the photography department at the company and the officer-in-charge of its photo archive. He left BAPCO in 1971 to establish his “Falcon Cinefoto” business which has become the biggest photography firm in the Gulf. In 2006, Abdulla Al Khan founded the “Bahrain House of Photography” through which he continued his career in photography and converted for the first time to using to digital photography rather the traditional films and negatives.

In 2007, Al Khan produced his first documentary book under the title “Muharraq, The Sea Rose” which contained photographs of this city that he personally shot from 1945 to 2007. In 2009, he produced his second documentary book “Democracy 73 – Experience of the People” and in 2011, he published “The Book of Pearls”. In 2013, Abdulla Al Khan published the book “Lexicon of the Eye” and in 2015 his book “Dates and Sea”. The texts of all these books were researched and authored by the writer and photographer Hussain Al Mahroos.

Abdulla Al Khan has documented numerous scenes of political, economic, social and religious life in Bahrain, the Gulf, the Arab world and India. His archive now contains more than two million printed photographs, negatives and slides.

The collection is available to researchers.

Contact Details:
Name: Hussain Mahroos
Address: (Near Isa Town Health Center) Villa 1539, Road 1637 Area 816
Tel: +973 17623071


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