Dr. Joseph B. Touma, a successful physician in Huntington, W.V., first became interested in Near Eastern art as a boy in Damascus, Syria. “As I was growing up, I encountered historic monuments on a daily basis,” he said. “After years of attending medical school and training in the United States, I rediscovered the beauty and uniqueness of this art and began collecting, at first slowly. Later, it became my mission to cover all aspects of this diverse art.” Over the years, he and his wife, Dr. Omayma Touma, collected art from the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent, North Africa, Moorish Spain and Ottoman Turkey. The Touma Collection, housed at the Huntington Museum of Art in West Virginia, is considered to be one of the nation’s finest collections of Near Eastern art.

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