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The museum's permanent collections consist of three main areas of interest: Ancient Art, Contemporary Art and World Ceramics. RAFFMA is best recognized for its collection of Egyptian antiquities—one of the largest displays of ancient Egyptian antiquities west of the Mississippi River, encompassing ancient Egyptian history from the Predynastic to the Graeco-Roman period. The other collections include representative examples of ceramic vases from ancient Italy, Korea, China, Southeast Asia and pre-Columbian America. The museum also has several smaller study collections such as a selection of West African art from the regions of Burkina Faso, Congo, Ivory Coast, Mali and Nigeria.