Articles, Press Releases etc.

Artists’ Opening Reception: Saturday, December 6, 6-8PM

Present Art XV is a group show featuring 25 artists: Gale ANTOKAL, Joseph CORSO, Craig COWAN, Carlos ESTEVEZ, Leonard GRECO, Jeff IORILLO, JETT, Jay KVAPIL, Alexis LAGO, Nancy Goodman LAWRENCE, Echo LEW, Paul LORENZ, Andres MONTOYA, Antonio MUNIZ, Gertrud & Otto NATZLER, Echiko OHIRA, Emilio RAMA, Mary ROTHMAN, Danny SCHEIBLE, Olga SEEM, Alfred SILS, Carol SILS, Keijo TAPANAINEN, Maritta TAPANAINEN, James ZVER.  Present Art XV is on exhibit from December 6, 2014 through January 3, 2015.


Couturier Gallery  166 N. La Brea Ave,  Los Angeles,  CA  90036


Couturier Gallery

Couturier Gallery

Antonio Muñiz

You are invited to attend as artist Antonio Muñiz

demonstrates “fumage,”  painting with smoke

Saturday, July 27, from 12noon – 4pm.

Watch a fumage video here

Brainstorming With The Heavens
Brainstorming With The Heavens, 2013, fumage & oil on canvas, 38″ x 48″


Summer – Like It Hot


A Group Show


continues through August 24


Click here to take a video tour of Summer – Like It Hot  

Gallery hours: Tuesday – Saturday 11-5pm

166 N. La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036  323-933-5557

With Liberty and Justice for Some Art and Cake.

Art and Cake

Walter Maciel Gallery

Walter Maciel Gallery Shines with Politics and Poetry

By Genie Davis

Through March 4th

I.D., Please! the insightful, beautiful, and poetic political group show now at Walter Maciel on La Cienega features work by Hung Liu, John Bankston, Lezley Saar, John Jurayj, Maria E. Pieres, Nike Schröder, Dana Weiser and Monica Lundy. On display through March 4th, the works serve as an elegantly wrought elegy for what could be the twilight of democracy.

Here you’ll find the sepia toned realism of Hung Liu’s “Father’s Arm,” or in contrast, the vibrantly colored, illustrative style of John Bankston’s oil and mixed media “Charmed.” Lezley Saar’s mixed media on fabric over wood “Not Born Under a Rhyming Planet” has a fairy tale quality with a surrealist edge. Monica Lundy’s “Ladies of the Barbary Coast,” created using pulverized charcoal, mica flake, gouache, acrylic, gold and coffee offers as many intellectual and emotional layers to the viewer as its mediums. The work creates a time capsule of place and person with these richly haunting portraits steeped in yearning.

Walter Maciel Gallery

These larger scale works are well matched in a companion show also at Walter Maciel Gallery. With Liberty and Justice for Some, co-curated by gallerist Walter Maciel and artist Monica Lundy, is an astonishing collection of 8 x 8 portraits – each of an immigrant. With over 100 artists contributing, there are personal portraits, those of family and friends, and depictions of the famous – such as poet Kahil Gibran, and National Parks Service icon John Muir. There’s also the infamous – the great grandfather and mother of the present POTUS are represented. Poignant and diverse, the project pays homage to the cultural mix and magic currently under attack by this administration.

Walter Maciel Gallery

Artists from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Philadelphia, and New York among other locations were invited to participate, and included a bevy of Los Angeles-based artists.

Portraitists include: Kyle Abernethey, Barry Anderson, Diane Andrews Hall, Evelynn Aponte, Julie Baroh, Lili Bernard, Libby Black, Gary o, Joey Castor, FreddyΖBrewer, Nyame Brown, Brian Caraway, Carolyn Casta Chandra, Chenhung Chen, Modesto Covarrubias, Yvette Daes, Rick Dallago, Bibi Davidson, Ray DiCapua, Diane Ding, Colin Doherty, Tim Doud, David Estrada, Diane-Sofia Estrada, Rodney Ewing, Susan Feldman, Chris Finley, John Fischer, Erik Flores, Gwen Freeman, Dwora Fried-Dreilinger, Mira Gerard, Dorothy Goode, Leonard Greco, Joshua Hagler, Michael Hall, Adrienne Heloise, Sarah Hirneisen, David Hollier, Andrea Hornick , Phillip Hua, Cynthia Ona Innis, Marlene Iyemura, Cassandra C. Jones, Kevin Jones, Soad Kader, Mark Kang-O’Higgins, Amy Kaps, Virginia Katz, Veda B. Kaya, Michael Khoele, Melanie Lacy Kusters, Danielle Lawrence, Carrie Lederer, Joshua Levine, Hung Liu, Sandra Low, Kija Lucas, Monica Lundy, Walter Maciel, Aline Mare, Kara Maria, Catherine Martini, Michael Massenburg ,Randi Matushevitz, Kelvin Ming Young, Geri Montano, Paul Mullins, Antonio Múniz, Chris Natrop, Rikki Niehaus, Damien O’Brien, Tim eres, Yulia Pinkusevich, AmyΖOkamura, Paul Paiment, Maria E. Pi Pleasant, Mel Prest, Linda Sue Price, Calida Rawles, Kate Rhoades, Karrie Ross, Ann Marie Rousseau, Maja Ruznic, Sonja Schenk, Nike Schröder, Annie Seaton, Steve Seleska, Christine Shields, Cindy Shih, Sheli Silverio, Jessica Snow, Lisa Solomon, Tamara Stephas, Mike Street, William Swanson, Camilla Taylor, Jessie Thatcher, Lava Thomas, Lien Truong, Gina Tuzzi, Linda Vallejo, Davin Watne, Lin Wei, Dana Weiser, Rhonda Wheatley, Stephen Whistler, Diane Williams, Andrew Witrak, Sandra Yagi, and Andre Yi.

The portraits as displayed make a quilt of faces; a pattern that compels viewers to confront just who we are both individually and collectively. It’s emotional to see the proud self-portraits of artists personally known alongside figures famous for their message of tolerance, inclusiveness, and environmental legacy. The paintings, and who they depict, make up a landscape not just on the Walter Maciel Gallery walls, but of America. Or the America we have believed ourselves to be. Consider: if so many of those faces were not here, immigrants banned or vetted out of this nation, would there be blank white canvases in their place?

Walter Maciel Gallery

Some of these portraits dance with color and fierceness, like Bibi Davidson’s portrait of artist and friend Dwora Fried, making solid use of the artist’s signature color, red. Others exhibit a glowing inner strength, such as Chenhung Chen’s self-portrait, the calm blue background belying the fierce gaze. The portraits may be diminutive in size, but they are anything but that in spirit. We see grace, anguish, poise, power, hope, transcendence, anxiety. We see people on the line for their beliefs, their dreams. There’s a perfect, jewel-like quality to these works, the way in which they fill their canvasses, the spark they ignite in the viewer.

Maciel and Lundy hope the idea of this type of expressive resistance art will spread to other parts of the country. Proceeds from the sale of the portraits are shared with the artists and these charities: the ACLU, The Trevor Project, the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood, LA LGBT Center, and SF LGBT Center.

Walter Maciel Gallery is located at 2642 S. La Cienega.

Artist’s Mobilize: With Liberty and Justice for Some … An Exhibition Honoring Immigrants

Image courtesy of Walter Maciel Gallery

By Amy Pleasant

Since the election, social media has been flooded with angst about the new political reality of a Trump administration. In light of this new climate, many artists are grappling with the same question artists have answered through the ages. What is their duty? Literally, the definition of art history is the study of objects within their historical context. History is calling, and the question is how best to engage their art with the world in a meaningful way.

Artist, Monica Lundy introduced this very conversation to her peers. Many artists, their families or friends were feeling a part of an increasingly disenfranchised community. A desire to lend their voices, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation was the sentiment that bound them together. Monica noticed there was a great deal of talk among artists about mobilizing, but no definite plans. In listening to her own calling she set out to give life to this vague notion of doing something to make a difference. Monica recalls,

My head began swimming with ideas, and while I wasn’t sure what the final vision would be I knew I wanted to do a project and rally as many artists as possible to participate. All my colleagues and peers felt the same urgency, and discussions began with fellow artists about what this collaborative project could potentially look like. After many conversations, I arrived at the idea that I wanted the project to celebrate and honor one of the communities under attack by this incoming administration. The notion that our country would threaten mass deportation of immigrants is absurd to me, and hypocritical. After all, this country is a nation of immigrants.

Monica found a kindred spirit in Los Angeles gallerist and friend, Walter Maciel. In his own words, I feel it is my obligation to use my public space and voice to bring attention to the issues that threaten our basic human rights. After the election wore off a bit, I realized I was having the same conversations with friends, family, colleagues and random visitors to my gallery, about our fears and concerns and what could be done to help make a difference. Monica approached me with her idea for the show and I immediately knew I wanted to collaborate.

Image courtesy of Walter Maciel Gallery

Co-curators Monica Lundy and Walter Maciel with Chinese born American contemporary painter, Hung Liu.

Together, Monica and Walter co-curated, With Liberty and Justice for Some, an exhibition honoring individual immigrants and their important contributions to American society. The exhibition opened January 7th at Walter Maciel Gallery in Los Angeles. Mounting an exhibition of this scope is usually takes several months of work and planning. The invited artists from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Philadelphia, New York and beyond responded overwhelmingly with artwork and within six weeks, over 100 artists sent their work for installation. Each artist contributed an 8”x 8” portrait of an immigrant. This exhibition became a very personal issue for many, reflected in the portraits of family members and friends, each with a narrative of the hard working and generous spirits found in the immigrant community. Some artists chose to feature well known immigrants who have made some significant contribution to American culture.

These included civil rights activist, Stokely Carmichael, tennis player, Martina Navratilova, actor, Bela Lugosi, architect, I.M. Pei, artists, David Hockney, Nam June Paik, Hung Liu and Marcel Duchamp, musician, Eddie Van Halen, rapper, Wyclef Jean, former Secretary of State, Madeline Albright, Industrialist, Andrew Carnegie, poet Kahlil Gibran , and father of National Park System, John Muir. Also, with a touch of irony, the portraits of mother of President-elect, Mary Anne McLeod Trump, and Great Grandfather of President-Elect, Frederick Trump (Trumpf) were included.

Image courtesy of Walter Maciel Gallery

Opening Night, January 7th.

The opening on January 7th, provided artists, subjects of the portraits and the public an opportunity to celebrate the “melting pot” that is America. Co-curator and gallery director, Maciel was amazed at the response and noted the synergy created by this very special exhibition.

I was completely overwhelmed with the attendance at the opening and estimated about 1,000 guests throughout the evening. I expected a big turnout with so many artists involved and it was so nice to meet many artists who were not familiar to me. Many artists came from out of town to be part of the celebration, which was heartfelt. I received many comments about how important the show is to our community.

This is only the beginning. Maciel and Lundy hope that this idea will also spread to other parts of the country. As Maciel states, I think it is important to work together as a community to voice our opinions and try to maintain the legal rights and the fairness we have fought so hard for. Hopefully, artists throughout the country will follow their own vision and continue the nearly sacred tradition among artists of reflecting those values which make for a better union. For the arts community this is no time to remain silent.

The exhibition continues through Saturday, March 4th. Proceeds from the sale of the portraits will be shared with the artist’s and the following charities: ACLU, The Trevor Project, the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood, LA LGBT Center, and SF LGBT Center.

For more information see:



Group Exhibition featuring
1. Magdalena Atria
2. Antonio Muñiz
3. Ricardo Rendón
4. Mariángeles Soto-Díaz
5. Rubén Ortiz Torres

Curated by Cecilia Fajardo-Hill

June 20 – July 25, 2015
Opening Reception :: Saturday June 20th 6-9pm

Fabien Castanier Gallery

2919 La Cienega Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232
Tues-Fri, 10am-6pm Sat, 11am-6pm


Los Angeles, May 28, 2015 – Fabien Castanier Gallery is proud to present Multifarious Abstraction, a group exhibition featuring the work of five Latin American artists, Magdalena Atria (Chile, 1966), Antonio Muñiz (Mexico, 1969), Ricardo Rendón (Mexico, 1970), Mariángeles Soto-Díaz (Venezuela, 1970), and Rubén Ortiz-Torres (Mexico, 1964). This exhibition is guest curated by Cecilia FajardoHill, a British/Venezuelan art historian and curator. Multifarious Abstraction brings together these five artists to explore diverse themes related to art and experience through individual practices of conceptual abstraction.

Multifarious Abstraction is an exhibition that questions traditional understanding of the nature of abstraction as a modern field separate from reality. The five artists participating in Multifarious Abstraction present conceptually challenging, loaded and sometimes political explorations of abstract vocabularies in art, which point to unique ways to experience and think on contemporary culture. The five artists are from Latin America, where the division between high and low culture is not as central or as marked as in The United States and Europe. The abstraction proposed here moves away from modernist utopian ideals and pure aesthetics, to dialogue with industrial and popular culture, daily life, inner struggle, politics and gender.

Magdalena Atria is exhibiting free abstract compositions entirely made with plasticine. The artist, who has developed an extensive oeuvre with this material, addresses painting through a material which is malleable, fragile, common and familiar, to produce slowly complicated surfaces that embody “tension between the rational and the emotional, between the personal and the collective, between the existential and the banal, the formal and the symbolic.” Atria attempts to connect the ideal, manifested through abstraction, with the daily and existential dimensions of concrete reality.

Antonio Muñiz is an artist who explores by an intuitive method ways to free the mind and perception from predetermined responses. He employs fumage, a technique for producing organic forms with a burning candle at varying angles and distance from the canvas, thus creating an uncontrolled compositional structure. Muñiz pursues the “gray area”, a multidimensional space that is both symbolic and psychological and deconstructs conditioning dualities such as black/white, outsider/insider, and right/wrong. The artist states: “The gray area is a non-judgmental, non-linear space where we allow ourselves to interact with our environment, breaking free of duality and of conditioned responses.”

Magdalena Atria

Ricardo Rendón’s work is informed by his interest in traditional trades and materials, which are for the artist places of “creative learning”. He states: “My work is presented as a system of questioning of the creative practice, of the execution, productive realization and notion of work.” His mediums range from industrial materials, to sand paper, felt and leather; and his techniques from perforating, cutting, nailing, grinding, sanding, gluing, to welding. For Multifarious Abstraction, the artist exhibits work from the two series: Work Area and Lighting Circuits, with materials such as copper and industrial felt. He transforms a plumber’s purposeful and precise procedure for joining copper tubes into the method for creating free standing sculptures which reflect both on traditional knowledge and on contemporary art’s expansive possibilities.

Mariángeles Soto-Díaz uses the language of abstraction as a way to materialize and connect ideas. Her work explores critically the legacies of modernism, echoing the particular modern historical traditions of Venezuela in dialogue with modernity and abstraction in contemporary culture. For this exhibition she will be showing the sitespecific installation The Pink Elephant in the Room, to insert into the White Cube the discussion of gender and racial inequality in the art world. As the artist explains: “The Pink Elephant in the Room addresses the ‘invisibility’ of these issues through indulging in the color pink as a feminist statement while also re-signifying upon the language of abstract painting.”

Rubén Ortiz-Torres is a multidisciplinary artist who goes back to the late 1980s. His work, whether it be photographs, paintings, movies or sculptures, is informed by a hybrid and original combination of popular and mass culture. One of the key references in his work is the low rider and car industry cultures. In his recent work, he experiments with the auto industry’s most recent advances in car paint. For example, his piece Womb Envy (2014), is made with urethane and thermochromic paint and high-density foam. This orange piece in the shape of a pregnant tummy, when touched with your fingers, becomes marked temporarily in yellow on the work’s surface. His black Mexican and American flags made with urethane and chromo-luminescent paint, exhibited in the show, refer on the one hand to modern issues of anarchist ideology, and on the other, to how these national symbols, especially in the context of recent events in Mexico and the USA (The Baltimore riots), may allow the political minority standpoints in contemporary society to be embodied.

Cecilia Fajardo-Hill is a British/Venezuelan art historian and curator. Fajardo-Hill specializes in modern and contemporary art with a focus in Latin American art. She has a PhD in Art History from the University of Essex, England, and an MA in 20th Century Art History from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London, England. From 2005- 2008, Fajardo-Hill served as Director and Chief Curator for CIFO and the Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection, and from 2009-2012 served as Chief Curator at the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) in Long Beach, CA. Presently, Fajardo-Hill is guest curator at the Hammer Museum, the Chief Curator of the Sayago & Pardon Collection and Abstraction in Action, and a visiting scholar at the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center. She is currently based in Los Angeles, CA.

A catalog of work will be available. Please contact the gallery for any press inquiries.


Lauren Whisnant, PR manager

Tierra de posibilidades infinitas

La exposición Fuera de este mundo llega de la mano y la mente del pintor MEXICANO Antonio Muñiz, quien mediante la técnica fumage presenta una serie de obras que prometen llevar al espectador hacia diversos mundos y DIMENSIONES, en donde las barreras desaparecen

Este mexicano nacido en Chihuahua, dejó su trayecto como arquitecto para adentrarse al mundo de las artes plásticas. Su nombre es Antonio Muñiz, quien nos habla en exclusiva sobre la inspiración para crear sus obras, proceso creativo y hacia dónde va su carrera; lo anterior, como antesala a su próxima exposición (abierta a partir del 17 de abril) en la Galería Oscar Román.

Tus obras tienen una clara influencia surrealista. ¿Quién crees que más ha influenciado tu arte? Uno de los artistas que más admiro es el chileno Roberto Matta, al ver sus mundos sentí una conexión muy profunda, inspirándome realmente a adentrarme en la pintura.

¿Nos podrías hablar del proceso creativo que sigues con cada una tus piezas? Comienzo tirando humo, un proceso orgánico que nunca sé a dónde me va llevar y, simplemente, me dejo guiar por el color. Lo más difícil de crear cada composición es que la obra evoluciona y siempre vas a descubrir algo nuevo.

¿Cuál crees que es el objetivo de crear obras tan abiertas a la interpretación? Quiero romper el pensamiento lineal y abrir al espectador a algo multidimensional. Me encanta cuando la gente juega con la obra y escuchar las historias que crean, eso me motiva mucho.

¿Nos podrías compartir y hablar sobre la inspi- ración detrás de “Fuera de este mundo”? Recuerdo que desde chico siempre me encantaba escaparme a estos espacios fuera de nuestra realidad, ahora, quiero compartirlos con los espectadores. En esta propuesta, diferentes mundos coexisten dentro de un mismo espacio y, a pesar de ser irregulares, conviven en armonía y respeto. Por eso le puse este nombre a la exposición: Fuera de este mundo.

¿Cuál es la pieza que consideras que tenga la mayor relevancia dentro de esta serie? La obra que se llama Free Spirited, un reflejo de mi personalidad y los cambios que he tenido que pasar. Desde mi pasado en la arquitectura, en donde el proceso era muy rígido, fue un reto romper este pensamiento y liberar mi creatividad.

Tu obra ahora está enfocada en pinturas, ¿pien- sas que eventualmente harás el salto a la escultura? Sí, me gustaría. Tengo algunas ideas de cómo iniciar, pero aún no he encontrado el material o técnica exacta para usar el humo. El reto que tengo ahorita es cómo traer algo tan espacial y etéreo a una escultura, ya que son dos mundos que chocan entre sí.

Muestra de Antonio Muñiz, fuera de este mundo

  • Con la premisa de desaparecer los límites entre colores, el artista mexicano creó una serie de obras que exploran las formas del humo y sus cambios.
  • ‘Fuera de este mundo’ será inaugurada este martes 17 de abril en la galería Oscar Román de la Ciudad de México.

Antonio Muñiz presentará 'Fuera de este mundo'

Antonio Muñiz se interesa en explorar y enlazar los pasajes entre ellos mismos en diferentes dimensiones por medio del arte, y Fuera de este mundo es el nombre de su más reciente exposición que inaugurará este martes 17 de abril en la galería Oscar Román.

A Muñiz siempre le generó curiosidad el concepto de las dimensiones múltiples, y mientras estudiaba el trabajo de varios surrealistas, descubre una técnica llamada Fumage, con la cual ha podido explorar el humo y sus constantes cambios de forma en un espacio determinado y de maneras indefinidas.

Por ello, la obra del artista nacido en Chihuahua hace a un lado visiones lineales y formas preconcebidas, para llegar a un punto donde la rigidez y realidad de la línea entre lo blanco y lo negro: La Zona Gris.

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De acuerdo con el artista, “La Zona Gris es un espacio sin prejuicios ni lineamientos en donde nos permitimos interactuar con nuestro medio ambiente librándonos de la dualidad de las respuestas condicionales. Despertando un descontrol de uno mismo lo cual nos pudiera dejar vulnerables y también nos pudiera abrir la puerta de las vibraciones de nuevas perspectivas.

En mi obra yo hago a un lado los lineamientos y formas preconcebidas. Busco crear conceptos nuevos y abrirme a nuevos cuestionamientos. Busco proveerle al espectador la oportunidad de tomar un paso atrás del comportamiento condicional y a darle la bienvenida a un viaje sin restricciones al descubrimiento interno para poder llegar más allá de la rigidez y realidad de la línea entre lo blanco y negro”.

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Con cada cuadro, Antonio Muñiz resalta que enfatiza la fluidez del campo perceptor que guía al espectador a ver un objeto como parte de y aparte del paisaje a la vez; así éste se convierte en observador y partícipe.

Otras dualidades , enfatizó, también desaparecen, como la del blanco/negro, extraño/no extraño, centro/margen.

“Finalmente, esta nueva orientación dinámica invita al espectador a entrar en un reflejo multidimensional mientras está presente en el momento y mientras despierta al conocimiento de lo que importante que es ese Gris”.

Fuera de este mundo de Antonio Muñiz será inaugurada este martes 17 de abril en la galería Oscar Román, ubicada en Julio Verne #14, Polanco.

Antonio Muniz: “Metamorphosis” at Couturier Gallery


By Eve Wood
Nov 2012

“Chance, spontaneity and ambiguity are all phenomena that can be difficult to manifest in visual terms, creating the “experience” of color, movement and line rather than simply repeating stale and predictable forms. Antonio Muniz’s first solo exhibition at Couturier Gallery utilizes these qualities to mesmerizing effect. Working in the ancient technique called “fumage,” which involves creating images with smoke, and inspired by the works of Wolfgang Paalen, Muniz was initially drawn to the technique for its mysterious, sensual quality, and its constant changeability, allowing for moments of chance, multi-dimensionality and surprise within the controlled space of the picture plane. Works like In the Mist of the Playground (2012) are suffused with playful whimsy, yet betray elements of deeper elegance and mystical awakening as the paint undulates and recedes simultaneously in a strange perceptual dance. Muniz’ working methodology involves a layering process, first using a Tiki light which emits the smoke along the canvas, then applying areas of oil paint and lastly going back in with the smoke to drawn the imagery together. This lengthy process exemplifies not only Muniz’ commitment to form, but to the ineffable moment of chance that infuses each of these luminous paintings.”

Click here for full article

ANTONIO MUNIZ on ArtScene, by Bill Lasarow.


By Bill Lasarow
October 2012

“Fumage was among the arsenal of techniques used in classic Surrealism to help get the juices of the sub-conscious mind going. The random imprint of smoke from a combustible object such as a candle would be applied to a painting surface so the artist could let their imagination roam. Like Jean Arp’s dropped strings, Max Ernst’s frottage, or the automatism of André Masson, fumage offers a random but distinct starting point. Historically these techniques are firmly rooted in Dada and Surrealism; aesthetically they enabled artists to focus on the process of the interplay between painting and imagination free from the pre-planned image. As earlier formal innovations gave artists permission to bring painting back to the two-dimensional surface, these innovations represented the decisive overturning of a pictorial hierarchy that the Impressionists and Symbolists had only begun.”

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State of The Art: LA


By Eva Recinos

“If you’re a Surrealist art fan, you’re bound to like the sometimes frightening, beautifully frenetic work of Chihuahua-born, Los Angeles native Antonio Muñiz. On his website, he asks that viewers open their minds and look at his work with “child-like imagination”. Head to the opening reception on September 15th at 6:00 p.m. and lose yourself in the awesome strangeness of Surrealism.”

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