Tabatha A. Yeatts



"If food and shelter give us life, the arts give us something to live for."
Thomas H. Keane

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

What you are doing does not matter so much as what you are learning from doing it.
~ written on an ancient Egyptian temple

My son recently got the new book by his favorite author, Rick Riordan. Riordan's Percy Jackson series was about ancient Greek deities; this one features ancient Egyptian gods and goddesses.
This week, we're in ancient Egypt:

Baboon with a wedjet eye, circa 688–525 b.c.e.
The baboon "was known as a deity called the 'Great White One' (that is, the moon), but soon this god was conflated with Thoth, the better known ibis-headed god of writing and recording." Thoth was in charge of making the calendar, which was based on the cycles of the moon, so the two gods went together well.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Bast of the Rising Sun
by Lynnette Shelley

Statuette of the god Anubis as embalmer, circa 332–30 b.c.e.
"This wooden figure represents the god Anubis with a canid head on a human body, wearing the feathered costume of Egyptian deities. In this pose­hands raised, palms downward­the god performed purification and transfiguration rites over a mummy. During the actual mummification process, a priest wearing a canid mask played the role of Anubis."
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

Isis and Osiris
by Susan Seddon Boulet

King Sahure and a nome god, circa 2458–2446 b.c.e.
"Seated on a throne, the king is accompanied by a smaller male figure personifying the local god of the Coptite nome, the fifth nome (province) of Upper Egypt. This deity offers the king an ankh (hieroglyph meaning "life") with his left hand."
The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Pharaoh Sleeves #3
by Fontaine Anderson

I don't know what deity/king/character is represented here, but I liked this harp from The British Museum -- it reminds me of a ship with a carving on the bow.


Egyptomania from the Seattle Art Museum
The University of Chicago's Oriental Institute has an ancient Egyptian coffin for a lizard.
Make Your Own Canopic Jars
Make a Cartouche
A bunch of interesting ideas from the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
I liked this work from a collection of art devoted to the TV show, Lost.
A list of Egyptian gods and goddesses from the British Museum
NOVA's Explore the Pyramids
Ancient Egypt Bingo

Thursday, May 6, 2010

What is life but a series of inspired follies? The difficulty is to find them to do. Never lose a chance: it doesn't come every day.
~George Bernard Shaw

We've got a mix of goodies today. First, let me show you something cool from Jim Gurney. I love Jim's blog, Gurney Journey, and here's a good example of why...he's got a great attitude:

How to approach a gorilla you want to draw
Glasses to wear when you're watching a gorilla


Now, let's look at works by Spanish artist Riki Blanco:


Steampunk is a genre of fiction that I don't know anything about, but I like its visuals/aesthetic style. Here are steampunk frogs by Michihiro Matsuoka:


Lastly, check out This Is Where We Live. It's a video about a city made of paper (books, to be specific).

Thursday, April 29, 2010

In scientia veritas, in arte honestas.
~ In science truth, in art honour.

Mixing it up with the art of science today.

National Geographic offers science visualization awards annually. Kai-hung Fung of Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital in Hong Kong captured the below image. It looks like a dragon to me, but it's a nose...

This next image won First Place for Illustration:

"Kuen's Surface"
A computer-generated picture by Richard Palais and Luc Benard of the University of California, Irvine.

The Institute for the Promotion of the Less than One Millimetre presents the Micropolitan Museum...
Here's a butterfly wing, which they say is "covered with tiny scales. These scales possess a microscopic texture that can produce iridescent colours by reflective interference."

I can't believe how beautiful a mosquito wing is:

From Princeton's Art of Science Gallery

Cement Flower
by Hope Connolly

She says: "For my senior thesis in George Scherer's lab, I was investigating the best way to dry cement without doing any damage to the cement's microstructure. I tried drying cement samples in both a desiccator and a 105 degree Celsius oven. The oven-dried samples had hundreds, even thousands, of these cement "flowers," with noticeable "petals" and "buds." The width of this flower is approximately four microns."

Uncovering Lost Painting of Vincent van Gogh
By Andrei Brasoveanu '09 (undergraduate) and Ingrid Daubechies (faculty)
Department of Mathematics, Program in Applied and Computational Mathematics

"Around 1885, Vincent van Gogh painted the portrait of a woman and then later reused this canvas, painting over her portrait to create "Pasture in Bloom," a painting found today in the Kroller-Muller Museum in Otterlo, The Netherlands.

Following X-ray and chemical analysis performed at a laboratory in Delft, The Netherlands, a fragment of the original portrait was revealed. Our work was to first reconstruct digitally the gray-scale version of this portrait, by registering it to the pasture painting, by identifying and removing grass and flower traces, and by filling in the regions lacking content. Afterward, we needed to bring the portrait to life by coloring it using local pigment information and color distributions from similar portraits produced in the same period by the artist."


The Brain Balloon
Arborsmith, where trees are shaped into living sculpture
Making models of the nervous system, on the wonderful Neuroscience for Kids site. (I like the "Thinking Cap")
Songs from the Science Songwriters' Association
Two DNA sculptures: one at UC Davis and one at UC Berkeley. (Scroll down to see a cool shot at the bottom)
Northwestern University's Nano Art Gallery
DNA sculpture made from an old piano.
I should do a week just on the periodic table of the elements. There's something very visually appealing about them. I love Theodore Gray's posters.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Imagination is the highest kite one can fly.
~Lauren Bacall

We're up in the air this week. British kite designer Michael Goddard has striking pieces, such as:

Blast, which Mr. Goddard says was "inspired by a David Bomberg painting exhibited in the Tate Gallery, Liverpool. Blast was also the name of the manifesto of the Vorticist group of artists, first published in 1914, to which Bomberg belonged. It was a rebellious publication which sought to overhaul the insularity of English art at that time...I decided to make the kite appear more 'spikey', infusing the characteristics of late 1970's punk."

As a writer, I particularly appreciate the pencils that are drawing the lines on Michael Goddard's Tri Box Kite:

by Michael Goddard

by Michael Goddard

You know I like posters. This one is from the Dieppe Kite Festival. "Kite" in French is "cerf-volant," which Google Translate tells me technically means "flying deer." (?)

This beautiful shot is from Wind Fire Designs. Their kites were painted by Ruth Whiting.

by Eric Curtis & Anne Sloboda


A fun 4-Kite Ballet on YouTube.
Art and Math Kite Kits
Kites as an Educational Tool
A History of Kites. This site also has plans for traditional and modern Japanese kites.
Miniature Kite Kits
Some Kite Festivals around the world.
World Kite Museum

Thursday, April 15, 2010

This week, we're raising our voices in song! Here's a video to get you in the mood:

You know what's cool about opera, besides the music/singing and the great Bugs Bunny cartoons?
* The spectacle of it! *

Today, we're looking at various forms of Opera Art.

A scene from the Met's Faust

I have to include a shot of the Sydney Opera House!
Opera House Sydney while it was lit for 3 Weeks by Brian Eno.
Photo taken by Repat

The cover of Lessons from the Phantom of the Opera
(not sure of the illustrator)

The Glimmerglass Opera has nice shots of their shows:
L to R: Liza Forrester as Flora (left) and members of the ensemble in Glimmerglass Opera's 2009 production of Verdi's La Traviata.
Photo: Richard Termine/Glimmerglass Opera.

The Ballet Scene from Meyerbeer's Opera, Robert Le Diable
by Edgar Degas
"Meyerbeer’s opera was first performed in Paris in 1831. This scene features the ghosts of nuns who had offended heaven with their impure thoughts."

Ernst Edler von Schuch conducts the "Rosenkavalier" by Richard Strauss
by Robert Sterl


Brendan Cooke's "Saving Opera One Voice at a Time" is a fun intro to the value of opera.
"Learning About Opera" games
An article on America's Opera Boom
Free digital versions of the Opera for Everyone series of CDs
The Teach Opera site has curriculum lessons for many subjects, including science ("Lung Capacity and the Opera Singer Lab") and social studies ("Create a Mediation Session Between Anna Bolena and Enrico VIII").
A recording about the opera Aida at Classics for Kids (They have shows about a lot of different composers)
The Opera America site as a list of recommended reading for students K-12 and also general reference.
Videos by the Atlanta Opera, including ones on costumes and make-up.
Wow! Opera study guides for every broadcast of the Met International Opera since 2000. It's a long list!
6th Grade Curriculum Unit on Beijing Opera

Thursday, April 8, 2010

How can art be therapy?

Art can relax you as you create it, give you an outlet to express yourself (and maybe even surprise yourself by revealing things you didn't realize you were thinking), and also provide a way to communicate those thoughts and feelings to other people.

Today we're looking at works from (by artists with chronic pain) and Expressions of Courage (by artists with epilepsy). We have some good links at the bottom, so don't forget to check those out!


Where Does It Hurt?
by Anna Rich
"I meant to visualize how my back feels sometimes, a very localized, intense pain that eventually ties my entire torso in knots. From the front, or on the face of it, it doesn't appear that anything is wrong. The beads of sweat on front are the only clue. When I experience them together, I want to explode into a lot of little pieces, too small to feel anything. I spun all but a tiny bit of the yarn myself. I knit, felted and dyed the painful points."

Resonance: Erasure
by Susan Gofstein
"In the fall of 2000 I developed severe chronic facial pain. This domination of pain obliterated all sense of an inner self. 'Resonance' began as an effort to structure and distance myself from an overwhelming existence."

by Stephen L. Spagnoli
"Thermosystemic is a visual depiction of neurotransmitters firing pain signals through the pathways of the brain on their way to my forever burning skin."

Echoes of Sadness
by Maureen Brown
"Silent screams express sadness that reverberate remnants of a former life. My sadness is shown with a teardrop from a missing eye, while the other eye is closed in denial. Black repetitive lines depict my echoing pain. The red tangled mass in the forehead represents the tension, anxiety, and angst I am feeling."

From Expressions of Courage:

Symbol Hand
by Bill Hoin
"Bill Hoin, age 68, created "Symbol Hand" using ink on paper. Bill states that all of these images are inside his head and when his “head is squeezed” they come out his fingers. Bill feels epilepsy has been a boon and a curse. It propelled his life into art, but left him with a dependence on medication permanently."

by Dianne Gates
Dianne Gates, age 45, created "Freedom" with watercolors. Dianne's world changed in 2001 when she had her first grand mal seizure. "I am learning how to take care of myself with proper rest, scheduled eating, and taking my medicine. I now feel great most of the time," Dianne says. "This painting represents the freedom I feel now that I am learning how to deal with life as an epileptic."


A nice compilation of definitions of What Is Art Therapy by the International Art Therapy Orgnaization.
A Mayo Clinic video of Art Therapy for Stress Management
Art Therapy-related Articles and Resources from the Creativity Portal.
Expressive Media definitions of various arts therapies. Also, related films
Society for the Arts in Healthcare
The Foundation for Hospital Arts
Art Therapy: Changing Lives video

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Feeling alliterative today, as we've got posters by Poles to publicize plays. Wonderful, funky stuff. These are from the Pigasus Polish Poster Gallery in Germany.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Guido Vedovato's paintings charm me. See what you think...

Scacco Matto (Checkmate)
Guido Vedovato

by Guido Vedovato

Maschera con Mandolino
by Guido Vedovato

Gufo Sopra
by Guido Vedovato

Ultima Contrada
by Guido Vedovato

Cercando La Strada
by Guido Vedovato

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

This week, we've got owls. What is it that's so wonderful about owls? Is it their big eyes, their beautiful feathers, their mysterious nocturnal ways?

By Kathleen Lolley

by Madeline von Foerster

by Ann Wood

Owl Fan
at the Peabody Essex Museum

The Greek goddess Athena had the wise owl as one of her symbols. This ancient Greek coin shows Athena's owl:

Automaton Owl Machine

The Enamored Owl
by Alberto Cerriteno

This next project is one that was made by multiple artists over time. I'm not showing you the whole owl tree, but if you follow the links you can see it. There were owl trees in other locations as well.

Owl Tree Wall in Capitol Hill, Seattle
Collaborative Public Art project


Threadless Owl tees collected by SpiffyOwl.
Teacher Tony Dusko made an adorable video about owls for his students.
Needle felted owlet by Victor Dubrovsky
A heaping helping of owls, from alyssam88

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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Today, we have Henry Fuseli, also known as Johann Heinrich Füssli.

Lady Macbeth with the Daggers
by Henry Fuseli

Macbeth consulting the Vision of the Armed Head
by Henry Fuseli

by Henry Fuseli

Constance (detail from Lady Constance, Arthur and Salisbury). This scene is from King John. Constance has learned that her allies have deserted her (to side with John). She says:

Let kings assemble; for my grief's so great
That no supporter but the huge firm earth
Can hold it up: here I and sorrows sit;
Here is my throne, bid kings come bow to it.

by Henry Fuseli

Romeo and Juliet
by Henry Fuseli

by Henry Fuseli

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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?
~Frida Kahlo

The Flight of Icarus
by Gabriel Picart

Flying at the Ann Arbor Art Fair
by Artist Unknown
photo by Z Squared

Clavichordium Blatta
by Michelle Stitzlein

Also, check out her Orange Beauty.

Flying Book Arch/Going Through All These Books
by Jan Reymond
photo by Thomas Guignard

Seyed Alavai explains his Flying Carpet this way: "This project consists of an aerial view of the Sacramento River that is woven into a carpet for the floor of a pedestrian bridge...A bridge is a connection between two destinations; it is not a destination in and of itself; it is neither here, nor there. In this way it is similar to an airplane, or a river connecting one place to another; here to there; a moment of flight frozen in mid air; a flowing river that takes us along with its current to another destination."

Flying Carpet
by Seyed Alavi

This last one is made of stainless steel spoons and flatware.
The Sunrise of Icarus
by Boban



*Flying Art: An International Exchange of Art Among Youth. Three schools or youth groups from around the world are involved in each flight in which they create artwork to share & discuss with their peers in different places. A human connection is made, leaving lasting impressions.
*How to make a pair of awesome angel wings.
*How to draw a realistic wing.
*Ignacio Rabago's Babel Library airborne books installation.
*A flying fish by Hieronymus Bosch

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

We've got a broad theme today: Paintings of people.

Three Musicians
by Pablo Picasso

Street to Mbari
by Jacob Lawrence

Sir Charles, Alias Willie Harris
by Barkley Leonnard Hendricks

The Girl with a Coin (Girl of Galicia)
by Bartolome Esteban Murillo, 1650

Two Women at a Window
by Bartolome Esteban Murillo, circa 1655-60

La Famille Indigente
by William Bouguereau


Three Musicians lesson plans

I like others of Wm. Bouguereau's works, such as Arion on a Sea Horse, the Grape Picker, and The Nut Gatherers.

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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ukrainian artist Kazimir Malevich (1878-1935) started the Suprematist art movement. Its name echoes racist groups, but it actually has nothing to do with that. He thought that the value of art was not that it could represent the real world, but that it could make you feel. He explained, "Under Suprematism I understand the supremacy of pure feeling in creative art."

I am not posting his suprematist art, though, because the paintings below are the ones that evoked the most feeling in me:

The Reaper on Red

The Knife Sharpener:

Three Women

The Woodcutter


Taking in the Rye


Malevich (spelled Kasimir here) on Artcyclopedia.
Work by Kazimir Malevich sold for record $60 million (2008)

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Mary Blair, who lived from 1911-1978, was an artistic director for Disney. Her work had fabulous shapes and color. Check it out:



Designing the It's A Small World ride.

Peko-chan put together a great archive of Blair's work.

Mary Blair Tile Murals

Mary Blair's illustrations in The Golden Book of Little Verses.

The Art and Flair of Mary Blair by John Canemaker (book) at Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

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Thursday, February 4, 2010

Today, we have drawings by DaVinci! But first, check here for info about a tape sculpture contest. (Yes, that's making sculptures out of Scotch tape! You can vote for the winner.) I'll bet DaVinci could have made some amazing tape sculptures...

Garment Study
By Leonardo DaVinci

This one has a great name.

The Lady of the Dishevelled Hair (or La Scapigliata)


Leonardo develops an interesting vehicle for an early James Bond -- the scythe chariot:

Maybe this is the guy who would go in the chariot:

Five characters


Universal Leonardo has information about DaVinci's inventions , his view of the world, Leonardo's take on painting aerial perspective, an in-depth biography, and more.
Project Gutenberg Presents The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci
An essay on Leonardo being a left-handed artist.
Looking Beyond the Visible: Maurizio Seracini of Florence "carried out a full diagnostic investigation of Leonardo's Adoration of the Magi. Multispectral images allowed an in-depth reading of the painting, from its surface all the way to the support. Moreover, the comparison between images in visible light and those in the infrared range enhanced the understanding of the genesis of Leonardo's masterpiece."

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

He had brought a large map representing the sea,
Without the least vestige of land:
And the crew were much pleased when they found it to be
A map they could all understand.

~Lewis Carroll, The Hunting of the Snark

Back in November 2008, we took a look at globes and I said we'd look at maps some other week. This is some other week!

Tourne Tourne Petit Moulin
By Elisabeth Lecourt

By Elizabeth Daggar
Liz provides info about each country, such as this page about Januarria.

Eva Just Had to Move she grew herself a head and some feet, and went looking for a healthier forest.
By Cori Dantini

Leo Belgicus, map of the Low Countries (1611)
By Jodocus Hondius (1563–1612)

Chasing the Dragon
By Matthew Cusick

The earth as a jester

All the Tea in China
By Susan Stockwell, made with tea bags and cotton thread
Copyright 2010 Susan Stockwell. Any use is prohibited without the written permission of Susan Stockwell.

Many links this week:

Library of Congress Map Collection
The Voyage of the Pequod (Moby Dick)
Upside Down World Map
Handmade Map Rose
Strange Maps blog
The Map As Art: Contemporary Artists Explore Cartography (book)
Bird Notecards (painted on maps)
World Beat Music Map
Mind Map Art (by Astrid Morganne)

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think.
~Martin Luther King, Jr.

How do you make civil rights struggles come alive with just a hunk of metal or block of cement?

Like this:

Police Dog Attack

Sculpture by James Drake, Photo by Chris Denbow


Birmingham Alabama's Historical Preservation Authority commissioned striking sculptures to commemorate the civil rights marches of 1963. The sculptures are located in Kelly Ingram Park, which used to be off-limits to people of color, and is across the street from the Sixteenth Avenue Baptist Church, where four girls were killed by a Ku Klux Klan bomb in 1963. Powerful history makes for powerful sculptures.

Children's March ("I ain't afraid of your jail")

Sculpture by James Drake


Firehosing of Demonstrators

Sculpture by James Drake


The Foot Soldier

Sculpture by Ronald S. McDowell, Photo by Dave Barger


Three Ministers Kneeling

The statue was based on the Revs. N.H. Smith Jr., A.D. King and John T. Porter, who led a march in downtown Birmingham on Palm Sunday 1963 to support the Revs. Martin Luther King Jr., Fred Shuttlesworth and Ralph Abernathy, who had been jailed.

Sculpture by Raymond Kaskey, Photo by Linda Stelter



Birmingham Civil Rights Institute's Making Connections: A Curriculum Guide For Grades K-12.
A nice brochure about the Alabama Civil Rights Museum Trail
The Society of Architectural Historians blogged about their civil rights tour.
Save Outdoor Sculpture's "Caring for Outdoor Sculptures" questionnaires, forms, and info.
While we're at it, Save Outdoor Sculpture also has a page on rescuing public murals.

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Our theme this week is fantastical eclectica...

Jason deCaires Taylor's Underwater Sculpture Park would give me goosebumps in person. Can you imagine accidentally happening upon his sculptures?

TamCC Project


The Gardener of Lost Hope

The Archive of Lost Dreams

Taylor is environmentally-sensitive with his work, and his site explains that the sculptures "highlight ecological processes whilst exploring the intricate relationships between modern art and the environment. By using sculptures to create artificial reefs, the artist’s interventions promote hope and recovery, and underline our need to understand and protect the natural world. The sculptures are sited in clear shallow waters to afford easy access by divers, snorkellers and those in glass-bottomed boats. Viewers are invited to discover the beauty of our underwater planet and to appreciate the processes of reef evolution."


Andrew Davidhazy is an RIT professor of Imaging and Photographic Technology who posts a generous amount of photography information online. He also shows some of his own fascinating photos, like these high speed ones. In particular, I liked the frozen lemon exploding, water rebounding out of cup, and the candle flames seen in schlieren beam. But the sneeze was also striking, in an "Ewww!" kind of way.

Candle Flames Seen in Schlieren Beam


I like calendars that I can look at for a while and still see something new, which is why I have enjoyed calendars by these two artists:

This article by Hugh Hart shows Terry Gilliam's terrific storyboards for the movie The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus and discusses how they were used. I think my favorites are the Hot Air Balloon and the Monastery, but then there's also Tony's Crag and the Doctor's Wagon...


Have you heard of The Lightning Field by Walter De Maria? This huge land sculpture was new to me, although it has been up since 1977. It is made up of 400 stainless steel poles situated in a one mile by one kilometer area in New Mexico. The location is remote and in the desert -- you can't just casually go see it. There's a cabin where you can stay (from May-Oct) when you are visiting it, and they expect you to take your time. The foundation that maintains the installation says: "The Lightning Field is intended to be experienced over an extended period of time. A full experience of The Lightning Field does not depend upon the occurrence of lightning, and visitors are encouraged to spend as much time as possible in the field, especially during sunset and sunrise." They ask that you not post photos, which I have honored.

I found this article about a trip to see it very interesting: A Pilgrimage to The Lightning Field by Todd Gibson
Also, here's visitor information.

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Thursday, January 7, 2010

“You be careful. People in masks cannot be trusted.”
~Fezzik from The Princess Bride

This week, we're wearing the mask...

Alderwood mask of a woman of high rank, possibly Djiláquons
(They can tell she is "of high rank" because of her lip plug, called a labret.)
Haida, around AD 1830, from British Columbia
from the British Museum


from Magic of Venezia


Japanese Goldfish Mask
by Merimask


It's understandable that doctors would have wanted to avoid catching the plague from their patients. But frankly, if I saw someone coming at me wearing this, I'm not sure how well I would have reacted. (Then again, if I had the plague, maybe I wouldn't have cared.) Shelley Batts offers some info about plague doctor garb here.

Plague Doctor

I like some other plague doctor masks, like this one and this one.


Mende Bundu Society (Sowei) Mask

From the Africa exhibit on the SJSU gallery site: "This twentieth century mask from the Sande Society in Sierra Leone was used for ceremonial purposes in the initiation of young girls entering adulthood."



Mr. Delahunt's Mask Making how-to page (using plaster bandages -- I would love to try working with those sometime.)
More mask-making
Bob, Why The Long Face mask by Valerie Fuqua
Tarot of Masks
A cool lesson plan using Sowei Helmet Masks to talk about beauty and culture.
One more African mask, because I just don't know when to stop.

Art from 2009
Art from 2008
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