The Gayer Anderson Museum in Cairo, Egypt, named after the British Officer John-Gayer Anderson is a great example of the 16th and 17th century Egyptian housing for the wealthy. In 1935, Gayer Anderson submitted a request to the Assembly of Preserving Arab Antiquities to live in the two houses and to furnish them in Islamic-Arabic style. In 1942, the two houses came into the possession of the Assembly of Preserving Arab Antiquities, which converted the building into the Gayer Anderson Museum upon his request. Nowadays, the museum features and showcases his collection of pharaonic, Islamic, and Asiatic antiquities.
The purpose of my visit to the museum was for academic reasons (Systems and Information 1). I was focused on collecting as much data as possible for my project such as maps, floor plans, labels, wayfinding paths, and so on. As my visit continued, my interest started to shift. Anderson’s collection presented such interesting visuals in terms of patterns and colors that I started to forget the purpose of my visit and appreciate everything that the museum was showcasing.
I believe that anyone who visits the museum will be satisfied as there is something to be enjoyed by everyone. As for me, I would say that the museum left a bittersweet impression on me. Anderson’s collection is impressive and just by looking at them, I could tell that he had an interest in cultural antiquities that extended beyond its aesthetics. Nonetheless, the preservation of the furniture and antiquities is very poor. The antiquities codes are written on top of them in red ink and were barely dusted off. I trust that if the museum is treated with more care, it would be more appreciated by the Egyptian public and not just tourists.
Carlsson, C. (2021, January 26). At home in the past: The Gayer-Anderson Museum, Cairo, Egypt. Exploration Vacation. https://explorationvacation.net/gayer-anderson-museum-cairo-egypt/
Gayer Anderson Museum. (n.d.). Discover Egypt’s Monuments – Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. https://egymonuments.gov.eg/museums/gayer-anderson-museum/
Tripadvisor LLC. (n.d.). Gayer-Anderson Museum (Bayt al-Kiritliya). Tripadvisor. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g294201-d308828-Reviews-Gayer_Anderson_Museum_Bayt_al_Kiritliya-Cairo_Cairo_Governorate.html