Interview with Sami Mohammad


Interview with Sami Mohammad


In this interview, artist Sami Mohammad talks about his life starting with his early childhood in Sharq in the early 1940s. He talks about his education in Al Sabah school in 1949 and recalls his memories of Al Sawaber neighborhood. He describes the old mud houses and how as an artist in the making he used its materials to create little statues for kids in the neighborhood. Mohammad also tells us about growing up in a simple family living in an extended family house, games that kids used to play, and his personal favorite foods and sweets. He relays his favorite subjects in school and how he got interested in art through the encouragement of teachers and school activities.
Moving into his teenage years and early adulthood, Mohammad talks about studying at Kaifan High School and moving from Sawaber in Sharq to Kaifan in the 1950s. He speaks about his relationship with the sea and elaborates on the process of getting water and the scarcity back then. He talks about the early days of the discovery of oil, the land acquisition, as well as Ahmadi and the oil company workers. Talking about his relationship with his parents, he goes into explaining his father’s profession of making bishoot (cloaks). Mohammad also speaks about the diwaniya and the business dealings that used to take place there. As a young adult he tells us about his pastime of hunting birds and going to the movies in Hawali.
Mohammad finally talks about his art career and his complete dedication to it. He describes the early days of joining the Free Art Atelier in Murqab, the artists he met there, and the process of establishing the Kuwait Arts Association in 1967. From Egypt to Vermont he tells us about his experiences studying abroad. He fondly remembers how he got access to ancient Egyptian art in Egypt and staying with an American family in Vermont. Towards the end of the interview he focuses on exhibitions in Kuwait and abroad in Egypt, Syria, Japan, and all over the globe. The last part of the interview is dedicated to the creation of the statue he made of Shaikh Abdullah Al Salem.






Reem Al-Hajri


Sami Mohammad


Kuwait National Library, Kuwait

Original Format



Sami photo.jpg


“Interview with Sami Mohammad,” AUK Oral History, accessed September 18, 2021,