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The Art Angle
44 minutes | Oct 14, 2021
5 Technologies That Will Transform the Art World by 2030
This week, we're hopping into a time machine and traveling to the not so distant future to answer this question, how will the technological tools being developed today shape the art world of tomorrow. It's a question we delve into in the fall 2021 edition of the Artnet Intelligence Report, which is out now. The theme of the issue is the roaring 2020s and inside we introduce you to the collectors who are looking to shift the axes of power in the art world, the galleries that will serve as social hubs once we get back out and about, and as we'll discuss today, the tech that will transform the business. To get the lowdown on what tools will define the next decade of the trade we spoke with Artnet News, Art Business Editor, Tim Schneider, who wrote a feature on the subject for the report. If you like, what you hear and want to read the full report, go to news.artnet.com/markets/the intelligence report. It's available exclusively to Arden news pro members. So if you aren't already a member, you can email@example.com slash.
34 minutes | Oct 7, 2021
Elusive Artist Ryoji Ikeda Wants You to Bask in His Data-Verse
It’s hard to describe the experience of a work by Ryoji Ikeda. The Japanese artist has worked as an experimental musician, performer, researcher, and art-maker, and he brings it all together for immense, immersive installations that fill the senses. But while the word “immersive” has come to connote Instagram bait, Ikeda’s works are anything but lowbrow. The experience of a Ryoji Ikeda work is both brainy and very visceral, intellectual and awe-inspiring.With a background in experimental sound, Ikeda puts you in touch with sonic experiences that your body probably hasn’t had to process before. With an interest in science and mathematics, his visuals often draw on huge data sets, giving you vast walls of data flickering at you faster than you can process, as if tracing the sense of a collective intelligence trying to sync up with the universe. Reviewing a show of his work in New York some years ago, Artnet News Senior Art Critic, Ben Davis once called it a kind of “cosmic minimalism.” This fall has been a big one for Ikeda. In Switzerland during Art Basel, he staged for his gallery, Almine Rech, “data-verse 3,” the closing chapter of a project commissioned 6 years ago by Audemars Piguet Contemporary, the art program of Ikeda’s long-time watchmaking patrons. The product of decades of research on sound and image, it animates data from CERN, NASA and the Human Genome Project. In London, the “data-verse” trilogy was shown together for the first time as the centerpiece of the largest-ever exhibition of his installations at 180 Studio, which drew crowds.Artnet News European Market Editor Naomi Rea, got a chance to experience both the London and Basel shows and a live performance given by Ikeda in London. Ikeda doesn’t do many interviews, but at Art Basel last month, she got a chance to sit down with the artist about his thoughts on what he does.
34 minutes | Sep 30, 2021
How Art Basel Did (and Didn't) Change After a Two-Year Hiatus
An art industry ritual returned after an unprecedented hiatus: on a Monday evening last week, artadvisors, dealers, and collectors ceremoniously filed into the formidable fairgrounds of Switzerland’s ArtBasel. The premier art fair’s 50th edition was set to take place across a balmy week in June 2020, but itslid back nearly a year and half, its plans marred by a raging public health crisis, limitations on travel, andrestrictions on events and gatherings. After so much uncertainty about the state of the art market, morethan 270 dealers calculated their risks and ultimately took a leap of faith and brought the best of theirrosters to the Rhine. It seems the gambit really paid off—by the late afternoon on preview day, galleristsseemed to really exhale for the first time in months or even a year.Was it business as usual? Yes and no. The event ran with incredible smoothness, with no issues save for afew spats on Twitter over whether the absence of US collectors was a boon for European deal-making ornot. Restaurants were booked out across town for lavish dinners, but being on the guest list wasnt the onlyprerequisite—proof of vaccination as required. Sales were strong, but not quite like the old days. AndNFTs made a flashy debut.On the whole, everyone seemed deeply relieved to be back in their booths or perusing the aisles. Artnet News's Europe Editor Kate Brown was joined in Basel by European Market Editor, Naomi Rea and Senior Market Editor, Eileen Kinsella to take the temperature of the scene.
25 minutes | Sep 23, 2021
Writer Roxane Gay on What Art Can Teach Us About Trauma and Healing
For the 100th episode of the Art Angle, Artnet News’s Style Editor, Noor Brara had the pleasure of speaking with critically acclaimed author, professor, and social commentator Roxane Gay, whose writings on feminism, politics, intersectionality, and culture have made her one of the keenest and most important observers of our time. Gay is also an avid art collector and appreciator who, along with her wife Debbie Millman, has in the last few years years amassed an impressive personal collection and has been outspoken about the not-always-nice nature of the New York gallery scene. She discusses her forthcoming essay for Artnet News: a piece that explores, in great detail, a new painting by the Los Angeles-based figurative painter, Calida Rawles, which recently debuted as part of her new show at Lehmann Maupin gallery. In the last few years, Rawles has garnered significant attention for her sensitive, photorealistic depictions of Black women and girls swimming and floating in pools—images that seek to posit water as an allegorical space for healing while also touching on its traumatic historical significance to the Black American community, many of whose ancestors died in the Middle Passage and who, for a long time because of segregationist Jim Crow-era laws, were barred from entering and swimming in certain bodies of water. The artwork that Gay is writing about—entitled High Tide, Heavy Armor—was created earlier this year, and depicts a Black man who bears a strong resemblance to Kurt Reinhold, a man and friend of the artist’s who was shot for jaywalking in San Clemente this past February. In the painting, the figure is shown from above and positioned low on the canvas, his eyes downcast as a body of water full of movement and tumult surrounds him, consuming the rest of the canvas. According to Rawles, the water offers a kind of topographical mapping of the killings of Black Americans, outlining several states where the numbers were highest. It is a poignant and arresting image, encompassing Rawles’s thoughts and feelings about the last few years. And in many ways, it marks a departure from her previous work. Gay discusses Rawles’s piece and why she connected so viscerally to her work.
31 minutes | Sep 16, 2021
Keltie Ferris and Peter Halley on the Mysterious Joys of Making a Painting
Artists Peter Halley and Keltie Ferris first met sometime in the mid-2000s, at the height of the abstract painting revival. Halley, a pioneering Neo-Conceptualist renowned for his disciplined grids, was head of painting and printmaking at the Yale School of Art; Ferris, a graduate student with a knack for wielding fluid materials like spray paint. Nevertheless, their work had a lot in common: a love of color, especially jangly fluorescents; an embrace of digital influences; and a desire to release painting from both its figurative and abstract forebears.Through the course of the teaching relationship, each found a respect for the other’s practice, and the conversation has continued—even if the two artists don’t actually talk as much as they once did. To pit their paintings against each other today is like seeing estranged cousins reunite: time has changed them, but you can’t deny the shared DNA.As New York’s first IRL art fair kicked off last week with the Armory Show, both Halley and Ferris presented new works at Independent Art Fair, known in certain circles as the “thinking person’s fair,” which debuted at the Battery Maritime Building in downtown Manhattan. Ahead of the fair, the teacher and his former student reunited to catch up and exchange ideas. Artnet News’s Taylor Dafoe tagged along (virtually) to record the results.What followed was a rare glimpse at two artists talking shop, in a freewheeling discursive conversation about about color, working methods, and what it means to make non-figurative painting in a time when figuration reigns supreme.
38 minutes | Sep 14, 2021
How Facebook and the Helsinki Biennial Share a Vision for the Art World’s Future
Some of the most impactful stories to surface this past year have revolved around three major issues affecting the world as a whole: there’s a worsening climate emergency, a global health crisis and—in the fold—a breakneck acceleration of technology that’s increasingly entangling itself into every aspect of our lives.When it comes to the art world, we can probably agree it's time to ask some hard questions. Should there be so many art events? How should we gather? Do we need to experience art in person to understand it?During lockdowns around the world over the last 18 months, we’ve been learning just how fluidly art can transition into the digital realm—and how clumsy a failed attempt can be.Among the art events that managed to pull off successful ventures this year is the first edition of the Helsinki Biennial, which took on these questions. Taking place on an island off the coast of the capital of Finland, the exhibition, called “The Same Sea,” meets our collective moment, exploring concerns around our interconnectedness, nature, and sustainability. And it’s not just in theme: the Helsinki Biennial is calculating and trimming its climate footprint every step of the way with a goal of becoming the first carbon neutral biennial by 2035.In the middle of a pandemic and rising temperatures, 41 artists are presenting works that carefully consider the surroundings of Vallisaari Island and an array of plants and creatures that populate it. To reach a wider audience when travel is both restricted and carbon-intensive, the biennale, which is on view until September 26, has partnered with Facebook Open Arts to explore how technology might help connect audiences with artworks peppered on the island.This week, we're thrilled to welcome Maija Tanninen, director of the forward-thinking Helsinki Biennial and the Helsinki Art Museum, and Tina Vaz, Head of Facebook Open Arts, to discuss the Helsinki Biennial’s unique approaches to greening a biennial, and how technology can be used to bring us closer to nature in meaningful ways.If you enjoy this conversation, please join our panel conversation, “Helsinki Biennial and Facebook Open Arts – Future Visions / Art & Tech”—which will be available to watch on our Facebook page on September 22.
28 minutes | Sep 10, 2021
Artists in Residence at the World Trade Center Reflect on 9/11
This week marks the 20th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York. Thousands of people who worked at the trade center or who witnessed the events of 9/11, or who lost loved ones, have stories about that.Among these are the artists of the World Views Artists Residency. In a terrible irony, the residency had been started by the Port Authority to put unused office space to work following the earlier 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center to try to draw businesses back. Run by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Worldviews gave each cohort all hours access to the building and six months of workspace on the 91st and 92nd floors of the north tower.As the name suggests Worldviews brought applicants from around the world, drawn to the prestige of New York and the chance to make work in such a unique space with its dramatic views of the city. Naomi Ben Shahar, Monika Bravo, Simon Aldridge, and Jeff Konigsberg were four of the 15 artists participating in the Worldviews Residency in 2001.Amid the commemorations and reflections on the meaning of the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we asked them to share their memories of the space, the day and how the experience has affected them going forwards.
30 minutes | Sep 2, 2021
Genesis Tramaine on How Faith Inspires Her Art
For centuries, Western art-making centered around religious imagery during the middle ages and Renaissance icons. Altar pieces and stained glass windows were regarded as meditative objects through which the faithful might reach a more profound religious transcendence.Needless to say the art world of 2021 is far more secular and openly religious artists are few and far between. So, what does it mean to be a devotional artist today? Our guests on The Art Angle is Genesis Tramaine, a Brooklyn born artist whose expressive portraits have conjured up comparisons to Jean-Michel Basquiat and even Pablo Picasso. As a child Tremaine first started drawing during church. Today, Tramaine, who is queer, still considers herself a devout Christian. In fact, she credits her works to the divine inspiration of the holy spirit. On this episode, Artnet News’s Katie White speaks with Genesis about her art and how it relates to her faith.
31 minutes | Aug 26, 2021
The Bitter Battle Over Bob Ross's Empire of Joy
Love him or laugh at him, Bob Ross is absolutely one of America’s best known painters. A quarter century after he died in 1995, a Bob Ross Experience debuted in Indiana last October as a site of pilgrimage for fans. Meanwhile, Bob Ross Inc. continues to mint money authorizing new products, even licensing a canibus company to make Bob ross eyeshadows in his signature colors. People around the world continue to train to become official Bob Ross Certified painting instructors. Most of all, the internet has let more people than ever discover old episodes of Bob Ross’s PBS show, The Joy of Painting, which ran from 1983 to 1994. In an age of memes, social media, and anxiety, Bob Ross’s big hair, easy on-camera demeanor, and welcoming demeanor have made him an icon with real, and maybe even growing, power.But there’s another side to the story, one told in the just released Netflix documentary ‘Bob Ross: Happy Accidents, Betrayal, and Greed,’ produced by the actress Melissa McCarthy’s production company. It describes Ross’s ascent and connection with fans, but also tells the story of the battle behind the scenes for the control of the Bob Ross Empire. On one side are Annette and Walt Kowalski, Bob Ross’s long-time business partners, They met him in 1982, lived together with Bob and his wife, and helped manage his rise from popular painting instructor to unlikely PBS sensation. Today, they retain control of Bob Ross Inc. and all thing Bob Ross—and remain a shadowy presence in the documentary, having refused access. On the other side is Steve Ross, Bob’s son, a painter himself, and a sometimes guest on ‘The Joy of Painting,’ where his father sometimes spoke of Steve as his heir apparent. Today, Steve remains shut out of his father’s empire, and he accuses the Kowalskis of having maneuvered to seize control of his father’s empire of painterly positivity even as his father suffered from the lymphoma that ultimately took his life.Joshua Rofe, the director of the documentary, is here to talk to Artnet News’s Senior Art Critic, Ben Davis, about trying to crack the riddle of Bob Ross’s life and understand the bitter fight to control his legacy, both in terms of money and meaning.
51 minutes | Aug 19, 2021
How Monaco and Accra Are Spinning the Art World in Opposite Directions
It’s late August, and for the first time in two years, it looks like the fall art season could be jam-packed with major in-person art-market events––even if some of them don’t normally happen at the same time as Starbucks is trying to coat the globe in pumpkin spice.But this summer, art-world trends and circumstances way beyond the industry’s control have led to some of the most noteworthy market activity happening in two destinations we’re not so used to seeing make headlines: Monaco and Accra, the capital of Ghana. What’s so interesting about these two places is that, together, they form a kind of art-market yin-yang symbol: the areas where one of them is strong are the areas where the other is weak, and vice versa. So by pairing them up, we can see something close to the full spectrum of forces shaping the global art market today. To help us on this expedition, Artnet News’s Art Business Editor, Tim Schneider, is joined on the show by two great guests who recently reported on these destinations firsthand for Artnet News Pro. First up, Kate Brown, European editor at Artnet News, discusses her summer sojourn to Monaco. Then, Rebecca Anne Proctor, the seasoned, globe-trotting art journalist, talks about the art scene bubbling up in Accra.
36 minutes | Aug 12, 2021
How Britney Spears's Image Inspired Millennial Artists
I'm sure you've heard it: For the past few months, the U.S. news media has been following the saga of pop star Britney Spears and the unusual conservatorship arrangement which prevents her from controlling her own finances or life decisions, put in place more than a decade ago after a very public breakdown. In June, Spears spoke out for the first time in court, asking for the conservatorship to be terminated.What, you may ask, does this have to do with art? It turns out that long before the #FreeBritney movement had people poring over her Instagram for clues or the New York Times documentary 'Framing Britney' revisited what her story said about the media and misogyny, she's been a surprisingly potent symbol for artists—in fact, maybe more than any other recent pop star. They've used her image to talk about sexism, about fame, about consumerism, and about and about the dark side of the 2000s.Why Britney in particular? And does today's reckoning with the recent past change the way that pop art takes on pop music? In this week’s episode, Artnet News’s Senior Writer, Sarah Cascone speaks to LA-based art journalist Janelle Zara about her artists' fascination with Britney Spears, asking these questions and a lot more.
32 minutes | Aug 5, 2021
How the Medicis Became Art History's First Influencers
If you're a fan of Italian Renaissance art and you were in New York right now, The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a treat for you. It's called The Medici: Portraits and Politics, 1520-1570 and it offers a spectacular sampling of ninety works of art from Florence's 16th century. But there's a twist. It probably comes as no surprise to anyone that Italian Renaissance art was connected to the most powerful people in society.Still, even today, if you call someone a Medici, you probably mean to say that they are a visionary patron of the arts when it could just as well mean that you are calling them a ruthless oligarch. This exhibition actually tries to show how some of the classics of art in this time were not just works of beauty, that the Medici happened to do on the side, but part of a carefully calibrated political PR campaign that deliberately shaped how the public sees this family in their time and up to our own.Art historian. Eleanor Heartney wrote an essay for Artnet News, looking at The Met show and the world of the Medici, asking how the history behind the art changes how we look at what The Metropolitan Museum accurately advertises as some of the most famous European paintings of all time.
33 minutes | Jul 29, 2021
How Two Painters Helped Spark the Modern Conservation Movement
Right now there is a powerful, highly ambitious, and deeply relevant art show in New York that weaves together the histories of conservation and American art in a way most people haven't seen before.It's a quick jag from the city across the Rip Van Winkle Bridge into Catskill, New York, but light years away from the bustling metropolis, where on either side of the river are the historic homes of the famed Hudson River School painters Thomas Cole and Frederic Church in New York’s Hudson River Skywalk Region.Inside those homes—the Thomas Cole National Historic Site and Olana State Historic Site—sprawls the show titled "Cross-pollination: Head, Cole, Church, and Our Contemporary Moment," with art that spans the mid-19th century to today, the exhibition is built around a suite of 16 bravura paintings of hummingbirds titled "The Gems of Brazil" by the little known Hudson River School artists, Martin Johnson Heade, and it takes flight from there exploring a network of interconnections between art, science, and the natural world.It also provides rich insight into the story of the relationships at the heart of the show between Heade, Thomas Cole, and Frederic Church, three of the greatest visionary artists America has ever known.This week on the podcast, Andrew Goldstein is joined by Thomas Cole National Historic Site curator Kate Menconeri to discuss how these historic artists first began thinking about ideas of conservation and preservation, and how contemporary artists have taken up the mantle to encourage a new generation not only to appreciate nature, but how to give back what for years we've been taking from it.
37 minutes | Jul 22, 2021
The Hunter Biden Art Controversy, Explained
This episode is devoted to Hunter Biden. Why? If you read the news, click on any cable network or walk down the street. You've probably heard that everybody is in a tizzy about the son of the president of the United States art career and his overnight emergence as a seemingly unlikely market darling. So to talk about Hunter Biden's art practice; how he views it; how the industry is embracing; the static it's generating the political sphere and what it all means, we’ve pulled together a heavy hitting roster of Artnet News experts. Senior Reporter, Katya Kazakina, Art Business Editor, Tim Schneider and Chief Art Critic, Ben Davis join the show.
38 minutes | Jul 15, 2021
Legendary Auctioneer Simon de Pury on Monaco, Hip Hop, and the Art Market’s New Reality
This week, the subject of our show is less a story and more of a phenomenon, and his name is Simon de Pury.A legendary auctioneer who has actually been called the "Mick Jagger of auctions," de Pury has led a storied career in art. A baron by heredity who was born in the Swiss art capital of Basel, de Pury entered the art business with the help of the legendary dealer Ernst Beyeler and swiftly blazed a trail of glory.He rose through the ranks of Sotheby’s to stage the first ever contemporary art auction in the Soviet Union in 1988, and ultimately became the house's Chief Worldwide Auctioneer before going on to forge the Phillips de Pury auction house—now known as Phillip's—inject the stale auction world with a new night club-esque vitality, and then move on to a string of illustrious businesses bearing the de Pury name.Along the way he has starred in Bravo’s reality show, “Work of Art, The Next Great Artist”; was the subject of a four-part BBC documentary; wrote a juicy tell all memoir; and most recently made a memorable cameo in the Netflix series Emily in Paris.De Pury is also a columnist for Artnet News Pro, writing a monthly dispatch aptly called "The Hammer," that is full of invaluable perspective on how the art market really operates along with intimate play-by-plays from the ultimate art world insider.This week, the art world mainstay joins Andrew Goldstein to discuss his career past and present, why hip hop jewelry is an undervalued market, and what he's looking forward to on the horizon.
39 minutes | Jul 8, 2021
18-Year-Old NFT Star Fewocious on How Art Saved His Life (and Crashed Christie's Website)
Last month, a new name entered the art discussion when a suite of five digital artworks sold in a special sale at Christie's auction house in New York for $2.1 million. And it's a name you might not expect: Fewocious. That's the nom de art of Victor Langlois, an 18-year-old Seattle artist, originally from a family of El Salvadoran immigrants in Las Vegas. Sold during Pride month, the opus is titled 'Hello, i’m Victor (FEWOCiOUS) and This Is My Life' and tells a very personal story. Via Fewocious's signature bright colors, graffiti-like text, and distorted faces, the work is about, as Christie's advertised it, "the journey through Fewocious teen years so far, growing up as a transgender male in an abusive household." In fact, it turns out that the works served as Victor's coming out as trans to the NFT world, at the same time making him the youngest artist ever to be sold at Christie's. Just a year ago, Fewocious was selling paintings for $95 online and just beginning to experiment with NFTs. Now, he's made a reported $16 million, and is the talk of the town. Artnet News's Chief Art Critic Ben Davis caught up with Fewocious about what has been a remarkable journey on many levels.
56 minutes | Jul 2, 2021
The Art Angle Podcast (Re-Air): How Photographer Dawoud Bey Makes Black America Visible
The Art Angle team is taking this week off, but we'll be back July 9 with a new episode. In the meantime, here's one of our favorite recent episodes, featuring photographer Dawoud Bey on the occasion of his retrospective, "An American Project," on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. After former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was sentenced to over 22 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd, the racial justice protests of last summer viscerally came back into the public consciousness, reigniting conversations in the news and in households everywhere about the reality of the Black experience in America. These issues take new focus at the Whitney Museum of American Art, where a retrospective of the photographer Dawoud Bey presents his magisterial exploration of the subject, in the form of his penetrating portraits of Black lives from all points on the national compass. Ranging in registers from jubilation to agony, to ingenious self-invention, to blissed-out hope, the show is curated by Elizabeth Sherman and SFMoMA curator Corey Keller. Open through October 3, 2021, the show is titled “An American Project” and it is a project that is very much still in the works. It so happens that this is a very big year for Dawoud Bey. The winner of a 2017 MacArthur “genius” grant and a professor at Columbia College in Chicago, the artist has already been the subject of two other retrospectives in his 46-year career, but this one at the Whitney is not only his largest, it’s also one of the largest surveys of a Black American photographer ever. On this week’s episode, Bey joins Andrew Goldstein by Zoom to discuss how his childhood and early exposure to work by African Americans informed his interest in photography, his ongoing collaboration with David Hammons, and what he hopes visitors will take away from the Whitney exhibition.
34 minutes | Jun 24, 2021
Tyler Mitchell and Helen Molesworth on Why Great Art Requires Trust
Today one of the swiftest rising stars in the art world is a 26-year-old wunderkind photographer who is equally comfortable shooting heads of state for magazine profiles as he is putting together shows for the gallery context. Of course, we’re talking about Tyler Mitchell, who gained international fame when Beyoncé tapped him to be the first black photographer to shoot a cover for Vogue and has now moved on to having surveys at the International Center of Photography and, beginning last month, a show at the very buzzy Jack Shainman Gallery. Adding to the excitement around that show is the fact that it was curated by none other than Helen Molesworth, one of the most prominent curators in the country who is known in particular for her groundbreaking reinstallation of the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles's collection and her ongoing mission to highlight artists of color. So what’s going on with this gallery show? To find out, Artnet News Art & Design Editor Noor Brara sat down with both Tyler Mitchell and Helen Molesworth to discuss how the show, entitled Feedback, came to be; how they grew to trust each other while working together; and what advice they’d give aspiring youngsters hoping to have careers in the art world one day.
31 minutes | Jun 17, 2021
How High-Tech Van Gogh Became the Biggest Art Phenomenon Ever
Unless you are living under a particularly out of touch rock, you’ve probably heard of the immersive Van Gogh craze that is currently sweeping the globe. In a sign of our strange times, the nineteenth century Dutch painter best-known for the vibrating intensity of his paintings and the tragic circumstances of his life, including what one Washington Post writer called “the whole ear thing.” He has now become the man of the hour. As we begin to limp our way out of a pandemic, with high-tech glorified light shows dedicated to his legend popping up everywhere from Naples to Paris and New York City, to places like Las Vegas and Kansas City, where you might not naturally expect the post-impressionist to draw a frenzy crowds. So what is going on and what does this all mean? To discuss, Artnet News Chief Art Critic, Ben Davis, is back on the show to demystify things in classic Ben Davis fashion. But before that, there is a very special guest. Possibly, the most special guests to have ever graced the show.
33 minutes | Jun 10, 2021
How Much Money Do Art Dealers Actually Make?
We’ve all seen the movie with the glamorous art dealer, maybe a villain who lives in a cutting edge palatial home, drives an impressive car and speaks with an impressive accent. That pretty much is the image of the art dealer in the popular consciousness, a sophisticated suave, sexy, probably ruthless, strikingly dressed person who is conspicuously rich. But how well does this image match up with reality? Recently, Artnet News senior market reporter Eileen Kinsella teamed up with the ace investigative art journalist, Zachary Small to find out just how much art dealers actually do make from their jobs. And what they found is pretty surprising.
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