Sabah was born in Nasriyah, Iraq. At the age of fifteen he was accepted to the Institute of Fine Arts in Basra, Iraq, where he lived and received his training in classical art. Al-Dhaher fled Iraq in 1991 due to his involvement in a failed uprising against the regime of Saddam Hussein at the end of the first Gulf war. After spending 2 ½ years in a refugee camp in the desert of Saudi Arabia he came to the USA as a political refugee in 1993. He has been creating and exhibiting his work throughout the Northwest. Sabah’s story was chronicled in an article in the New York Times titled, A Nation at War: Iraqi-Americans; Chiseled from Marble, a Refuge from War News, (April 6, 2003).