USF Libraries – Karam Collection at the Tampa Museum of Art

On view from November 11, 2021

November 21, 2021 By Maggie Trela

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The Farid Karam, MD Collection of antiques from Lebanon is showing at Tampa Museum of Art from November 11, 2021 to April 11, 2022. Fifty-six items from the 149-item collection are included in the exhibit and are on loan from USF Libraries Tampa Special Collections. The collection was generously donated by Dr Farid Karam and Jehanne Karam in 1998. It is the first time since this donation that a selection of these ancient objects will be presented to the general public.

Bust of a young man holding a palm leaf, stone sculpture, Roman Syria, ca. 2nd-3rd cent. THIS. Karam collection, special collections of USF libraries, 63

The collection as a whole includes Roman and Phoenician antiquities, including jars, goblets, bottles, oil lamps, unguentaria (small ceramic or glass vessels), busts and figures. Most of the artefacts are from Roman Syria and date from the Middle Bronze Age to the early Middle Ages. The collection consists of metal, stone, ceramic, and glass objects, including medical tools from the Hellenistic and Roman periods, Bronze Age toggle pins, and other decorative items. Ceramic artifacts include eight lamps, dating from the first to the 13th century CE, and a series of unrelated bowls. The glass objects include ointments from the first four centuries of the first millennium and some vases dating from the Hellenistic period. The stone objects are represented by three artefacts in alabaster.

The exhibition of the Karam collection is twinned with Taking shape: the abstraction of the Arab world, from the 1950s to the 1980s until January 16, 2022. Takes shape explores mid-20th century abstract art from North Africa, West Asia and the Arab Diaspora, a vast geographic expanse that encompasses diverse cultural, ethnic, linguistic and religious backgrounds.

We invite you to explore the collection of the Tampa Museum of Art, open 7 days a week. USF students enter for free with their university ID card, adult admission is $ 20, Florida educators from $ 12 and children 6 and under are free. You can find the opening hours and address at

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