David LaChapelle solo exhibition in Holland

Good news for modern man: the future is bright. If you need any convincing to pop over to the pretty city of Groningen in Holland, the David LaChapelle solo exhibition should sway you in the right direction. Not the most obvious place to showcase the photographer’s raunchy images (after all, he has a history photographing Beyonce, Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga), but this latest anthology returns to his artistic roots, and complement Groningen’s old town juxtaposed with modern buildings, which nestle on the canal in the north of the Netherlands.

David LaChapelle The Rape of Africa

Known for producing experimental fashion editorials, commercials and music videos for high profile clients, LaChapelle has worked with every big name in the industry, and is one of the most respected and in demand photographers around the world; So it is interesting to find that the Gronginger Museum, already owns one of his controversial, hyper stylised works, and is the place he chose for his first solo exhibition in the Netherlands.

To the broad minded Dutch nation- naked bodies, interracial relationships and liberal religious views are widely acceptable, and a show that comments on sexuality, birth, death and nature in an idyllic, utopian world would appear to be the perfect partnership. Taking over the modernistic Museum (which was redesigned by Philippe Starck and Alessandro Mendini) adds a unique, modern focus to the university town. Situated in a central location on the canal, and directly opposite the ancient architecture of the train station it offers a juxtaposition of eras, but this is something that works so well in Holland.

A bit of a rebel himself, LaChapelle ran away to New York aged 15, and worked as a busboy in Studio 54. Immersing himself in glamorous New York disco scene, he got to know the “It” crowd and partied with the movers and shakers of the eighties pop art scene including Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. It is also where he was introduced to Andy Warhol and his infamous “Factory”. Already photographing people, LaChapelle soon gained recognition for his uniquely raw images. Snapped up by Warhol, he became the photographer for ‘Interview’ magazine and exhibited alongside other 80s pioneers Doug Aitken and Karen Kilimnik.

His style emphasising lewd, larger than life subjects became him trademark, and he embraced the flamboyant characters of the nineties and noughties. Celebrities, high fashion magazines and advertising clients were queuing up to get immersed in La Chapelle’s irreverent gaze- where anti-perfection was approved and surrealism encouraged.  However, the celebrity bubble seems to have peaked for LaChapelle, as his more recent work is a much more personal representation of transfiguration, regaining paradise, and the notion of life after death.

David LaChapelle The Rape of Africa

Breaking boundaries, La Chapelle uses fine art as a basis for his work and is the first to admit he explores the darker side of reality. Often using props, he is the master of creating make believe worlds where anything is possible. The hyper-real landscapes blend urban and suburban environments to create a make believe setting which is also super real and accessible. This form of art is contrary to what other commercial photographers were presenting, and opened up a niche market for emotions.

In fact, after shooting every celebrity (and their dog) in 2006, he stepped away from commercial work, retreating to an isolated former nudist colony in Maui, Hawaii to focus on fine-art photography and farming. Whether this break was a rejection of the fast moving lifestyle where celebrity photography comes with its own celebrity or it was a time to reflect as he openly talks about his friends who died of AIDS, his consequential work has a more personal influence.

David-LaChapelle-The-House-at-the-End-of-the-World-2005

‘Good News for Modern Man’ is filled with sins and redemption is a deeply personal insight into LaChapelle’s life. With over 70 pieces, the narrative is as jerky as it is unanticipated, yet it seems to flow. Clearly inspired by fine artists Edward Hopper, William Blake and the Old Masters, LaChapelle has a knack of combining the two disciplines -fusing photography with art; Resulting in large scale representations of joy, lust, and paradise which are symbolic and timeless.

Mostly, these works reject the material world and are deeply spiritual or religious, with obvious reference to the greats. In particular, you can recognise Michelangelo’s ‘Renaissance’ in ‘The Deluge’ series. An immersive piece of art which engulfs the viewer in the ginormous seven metres wide span. On closer inspection you can see the sitters are big names from celebritydom, with Kanye West as Jesus, Lil’ Kim as the Virgin Mary and Naomi Campbell as Venus, which might be highly irreverent for some.

Part of LaChapelle’s work is tongue in cheek. Courting exploitation, he chooses religion to express popularity; Nothing is sacred or forbidden and his modern day representation of religious icons brings a new dimension to opinions of life after death and questions the metaphysical side of life.

With a clear shift in focus from commercial commissions, this exhibition displays LaChapelle’s personal and intuitive concepts. Split into categories. ‘New World’ shares his personal search for Eden using thinly disguised biblical references which have the background of his sanctuary in Hawaii. However these pieces are seen more as art than photography as the two disciplines are fused to produce hyper-surreal images which burst into thousands of colours in front of you.

Lachapelle-blancanieves

The exhibition will no doubt question the viewer’s spiritual beliefs, and LaChapelle even questions himself on how long modern art actually lasts. It is a must-see for anyone with an inquisitive nature as the show is not just about the artworks, but is an important slice of history which makes a profound commentary on the contemporary world.

The exhibition LaChapelle: Good News For Modern Man can be seen from 21 April to 28 October 2018.

Head to Groningen for the exhibition and stay the weekend. This up and coming city is well worth a visit and only two hours from Amsterdam, you can have the perfect weekend away!

Jesus is my homeboy

FACTBOX

Gronginger Museum

*Hotel*

A pretty, listed 4star hotel,  dating back to the 15th century.

NH Groningen Hotel de Ville

Oude Boteringestraat 43-45, 9712 GD Groningen

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*Canal Trip*

The perfect way to see the city without walking across the cobbles.

Rondvaartbedrijf Kool

Stationsweg 1012, 9726 AZ Groningen

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*Restaurant*

Delicious, healthy modern cuisine. Open late, but must book.

Brasserie  Midi

Folkingestraat 42, Groningen

FAULT Magazine Reviews: Bulldog Skincare for Men

Bulldog Skincare for Men

 

In the last couple of years, Bulldog skincare for men has surged in popularity, especially within the young gentleman’s market which has been notoriously hard to crack for other brands. As a brand, Bulldog believe profoundly in natural ingredients, and most importantly, they are cruelty-free – so we wanted to test out their range of products to see if there’s substance behind and hype.

Bulldog offers a wide range of gift boxes for the Christmas season making them an excellent choice if you’re looking for a stocking filler or more of an all-encompassing gift box. As I had to travel quite a bit within December, I opted to try the Skincare Kit for Men for the main advantage that it comes in a neat travel bag that I was also in the market for.

The Skincare for Men gift set contains, Original Face Wash, Original Face Scrub and an Original Moisturiser, but there is enough space within the wash bag for additional toiletries if it’s going to be used for travel or gym use. After an incredibly long 12 hours in the air, it was time to put the product to the test.

 

Bulldog Original Face Scrub

After a long flight, tough gym session or just whenever my skin is feeling a little greasy I like to start my cleanse with a face scrub. These are great for removing dead skin cells and on reducing the face’s rough and tired look. It’s good to note that scrubs aren’t for everyday use, I would use them once every two weeks as more of a skin refresh as opposed to a daily essential. I’ve tried many over my time, some good and some not so good but I can say with confidence that the Bulldog iteration falls within the former. I decided to test out the scrub fresh of a 12-hour flight, and it worked wonders. After just one use my skin was noticeably smoother to the touch, and that greasy dewy shine that resulted from clogged pore was vanquished. It’s safe to say; we’re off to a good start.

Bulldog Original Face Wash

The Face Wash is what I use for everyday use – best used after shaving or in the shower, this is your all round facial cleanser that’ll rid you of the ordinary imperfections that life likes to throw at us. As a face wash, I’m happy to say it worked wonders! Enriched with essential oils and green tea which has been hailed for centuries as a skincare godsend, one use in the morning and my skin has a healthy glow. While some facewashes strip the face of all its natural beneficial oils leading to dryness (not ideal for the winter), I didn’t experience that from Bulldog what so ever. The product is enriched with ingredients to promote natural-looking moisturised skin and removes only the excess grime and grease which can lead to redness and spots if left uncleansed.

 

Original Moisturiser

I always finish my routine with a good moisturiser, winter will do a number on your skin and leave it dry and chapped, so it’s great that this pack includes everything you need to battle against this. Many men turn away from moisturisers as they can leave the skin feeling greasy but I didn’t experience this at all with Bulldogs’. The moisturiser is light and applying a thin layer post wash helps to rid the skin of any dryness some might experience. For men with dry skin like myself, it’ll also be good to note that unlike other products which require multiple applications throughout the day, I only found myself applying a thing layer every morning and once again in the evening.

All in all, I’m happy to recommend the Bulldog Kit as an excellent gift for any gentleman looking for an all-round skincare range. The kit acts as an essentials giftbox, especially for men who aren’t too familiar or interested in full-scale grooming kits. I’ve taken the pack on holiday with me three times now, and it’s great just to have a bag with precisely what I need for short business trips not to mention the bonus of the washbag that I can throw my toothbrush and shampoo in whenever I go away. It retails at a very affordable £15 in the UK and is readily available on the high street for a quick and easy Christmas purchase.

For more information, head over to https://www.bulldogskincare.com/

FAULT Magazine Brand Focus: 31st State

 

31st State – Style & An Abundance of Substance

 

Ah, the teenage years, oily skin, bad hair days and pimple breakouts galore, sadly all three of these can follow us into our adult lives, and for that reason, I decided to review 31st State, a skincare range explicitly produced for young men.

31st State skin, body and hair products combine active naturally derived ingredients such as Manuka and Witch Hazel. While there has been a recent surge in popularity, in truth, dermatologists have been recommending the ingredients above for centuries due to their restorative skincare properties. Despite this, you’ll often find products on the market are jam-packed with additives, over perfumed and packed with preservatives, not something you want to use on sensitive or any other skin type for that matter. Seeing all the unnaturally infused products on the shelves inspired the founder of 31st State, Stephanie Capuano to formulate her range of products for her teenage sons to use, and that’s what we’re testing out in today’s ‘FAULT Brand highlight’.

I started with the 2-in1 Hair and Body Wash, at the most basic of evaluations, it’s a pleasant body wash. The body wash doesn’t have an overpowering scent like the many other products aimed at young men on the market (or the chemical cyan hue). It’s a delicate product and doesn’t leave your face feeling like you’d been slapped by a cactus the way we’ve seen with other high-end cleansers. A look at the ingredients shows that it’s still able to fight off bacteria without the harsher chemicals too. Containing silver and zinc, the former works to fight spots and bacteria while the latter works to control body odour and soothe irritated skin; I find it’s great for an all-round body wash.

RRP £8.99

Moving on to the Foaming Face Wash, like I said the Hair and Body Wash was more of an all-rounder, but sometimes you want a more in-depth cleanse to start your day. For those times, I used their Foaming Face Wash, designed to cleanse the skin of dirt, oil and bacteria thoroughly. The face wash is excellent for anyone prone to oily skin (as most teenage boys are!). To combat redness and irritation tea tree releases into the skin slowly over the course of the day which is exceptional for soothing the skin post-shaving. Manuka works to cleanse and rid the skin of oils which could lead to spot. I’d recommend using this product once every couple of days, as I would for most cleansers as the trick is to remove excess oils which have built up over time and not to completely remove the skins naturally occurring oils all healthy skins has.

RRP £12.99

The Overnight Clearing Pads were a great addition to my nighttime routine, mainly because it was so easy to do – making them a small ask for any young man to add to his nighttime routine. The pads are rich in Lactic Acid Manuka and Tea Tree which helps to shrink pores and remove the surface dirt and oil from a tough long day. An excellent addition to the Christmas list, it’s low maintained and easy to use but will make such a big difference to anyone’s skin!

RRP £15.99

Of course, there’s more to appearance than only the face, so to combat those bad hair days, I reviewed the Easy Hold Styling Gel. Well I didn’t, my housemate did, my “having hair days” are far behind me! Filled not only with Tamanu but also shea gives a natural hold and definition to the hair without the clumps and stickiness of other products on the market. Now you’d of heard a lot about shea this year, with she butter being one of the beauty industries runaway ingredients, Tamanu oil adds hair shine and UV protection. My housemate mentioned that it has a great hold, he wasn’t having to reapply throughout the day, and it washes out exceptionally quickly compared to other products he had tried.

RRP £6.99

 

All in all, we’re highly impressed by 31st State! It goes without mentioning a lot of the time, but they have also carved out the perfect branding approach for a product such as theirs. It’s cool; a Californian surfer-dude aesthetic is so fitting for their user base. It’s the quintessential product for any young man’s Christmas list – a brand with both style and substance made for men who personify the very same qualities.

Shop the product – www.31st-state.com

Sundara Karma – Live at Brixton O2 Academy

Reading four-piece Sundara Karma played their biggest ever headline show on 5th October to a delirious crowd at Brixton O2 Academy. Comprised of vocalist/guitarist Oscar Pollock, drummer Haydn Evans, bassist Dom Cordell, and guitarist Ally Baty, the indie pop/rock band has been making music since the tender age of fourteen.

With support from Willie J. Healey and The Magic Gang, the quartet kicked off their gig with gothic number ‘Another Word for Beautiful’, before launching into the more upbeat crowd pleasers ‘A Young Understanding’ and ‘Loveblood’.

The evening saw the band play the entire ‘Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect’ album, intertwined with a few old favourites such as ‘Flame’, ‘Run Away’ and ‘In the Night’; much to the delight of their captivated fans, who sang along with Pollock word for word on almost every track. The androgynous frontman even jumped into the crowd during ‘Vivienne’.

“Is heaven such a fine thing?” Pollock sang on ‘Olympia’, bathed in the blue luminescence of the stage, which shifted to red as the gig progressed, three white orbs glowing behind him. 

Ending their set with ‘Explore’, Drummer Haydn Evans cast his sticks into the crowd before the band exited the stage to a fittingly roaring applause.

Sundara Karma’s lyrics might be about the trials and tribulations of youth, but their evolved sound offsets their young years. Filled with entrancing guitar riffs and soaring vocals, a live show with them is not to be missed.

Words Aimee Phillips

FAULT Magazine Travel Essential #21 – LUSH Toothy Tabs

 

This travel season, FAULT Travel have been over the world trying to find the best destinations for summer 2017 but unfortunately, all the hours in the air haven’t done wonders for our beauty regimes. To combat this, we’ve selected the best products which helped us keep our beauty regiment on track whilst on the move.

Today, we’re turning to oral hygiene and we’ve found the best toothpaste for you to pack into your in-flight luggage. We say “toothpaste” but in fact, it isn’t a paste at all; it’s a tablet.

 

Regardless what class you fly, you’ll never get a phenomenal night’s sleep while travelling and uncomfortable sleep will usually lead to an uncomfortable awakening. Packing toothpaste whether in your carry-on or checked luggage is always a pain, you either risk it bursting in your luggage and if you’re not planning to check your luggage – you’re going to have to specifically find a tiny tube which is under the liquid allowance of the airport you’re flying out from. However, Lush have created the answer to all our woes with their latest line of Toothy tabs!

With a 22 hour flight on the horizon, our travel team packed their sample bottles in their carry-ons and were off down under.

Waking up from a very uncomfortable night’s sleep in a middle seat, it was time for an in-flight refresh. I took the ‘Boom’ and ‘Oral Pleasure’ tabs with me. According to the package, one tab is enough however for the sake of the review I wanted to try more of a variety. The tablets are really small but they sure pack a punch. Chewing on the ‘Boom!’ tab, which is infused with powdered charcoal, gunpowder tea, pepper oil and ground chilli, it made for a strangely pleasant brushing sensation to experience first thing. The spicy cola felt like a black of freshness inside my mouth and the packaging did not lie, one tab was truly enough to leave me feeling refreshed and awake for the rest of my journey.

After checking in, it was time to try out the humorously named ‘Oral Pleasure’ tabs. I found the taste was more sweet and far more subtle than the ‘Boom’ tabs. If you’re not one for the big burst of spice, then this flavour would be more up your street. The sweeter taste of passion fruit and electric daisies made for a soothing brush which was great for a just before bed. Both tabs dissolved after a few bites and despite it seeming like a new fangled idea – the act of brushing isn’t too dissimilar to using conventional toothpaste. 

While we primarily planned to focus this review of the uses while in transit, we actually found the tabs very useful throughout the trip and even at home. Throughout summer I packed the tabs on my way to festivals, overnight hikes and even packed them in my “keep fresh” kit for Fashion week. I can recount times previously at all of these where my toothpaste has managed to leak and stain my handbags and other luggage but with these, I was safe from such threats.

In short, we loved the toothy tabs for at home and away! With the added bonus of the toothy tabs being vegan and using natural ingredients, we couldn’t recommend them enough. For more information head over to Lush.com

 

Picture Credit: Lush.com

 

Could The Apple Watch Be The Fashion Editor’s Dream Accessory?

Apple Watch - pre subbing

 

 

Fashion week while glamorous, is never an easy time of year. Traversing from show to show, organising invites among your writers and photographers can be the most hellish time for Fashion Editors. Let your phone run out of battery and you’re dead in the water. This SS16LC:M, FAULT looks to the technology industry to find out what gadgets could truly help us get through it all. This week we look at the much talked about Apple Watch and how, if at all, it helped us get through another tough season of shows.

Wearable tech hasn’t quite been as revolutionary as we once hoped. As we saw with the GoogleGlass, there’s a fine line between useful and gimmicky. On some occasions you’ll find that many of these newfangled devices aren’t being made with their consumer in mind. We’re happy to report that this is not the case with the Apple Watch. While reviews have differed for the device since it’s inception, could it be that the Apple Watch’s home is in fact within the fashion industry…

Design

Apple Watch - pre subbing

Starting with the basics, the strap is interchangeable! Apple naturally offers some great options, our FAULT Faves being their Noir Leather Strap and Link Bracelet. These classic options definitely outclass the sport bands for any style conscious user? we can not recommend wearing any watch to a formal event with a nonmetallic or leather watch strap.

If the Apple made watches don’t float your boat, there are also many 3rd party options for all tastes. In tune with the Apple design ethos, the rounded off rectangular watch face is a very unique and recognisable body design which is also reminiscent of the iPhone 3g. It’s sleek no doubt and I’ve yet to see the rule book on what shape a watch face should take.

Personally, we like it. Not to mention that depending on how you configure the home screen settings, at a glance it can tell you all the urgent and vital information that you may need to know. Being able to see the next show you’re attending without having to trawl through your invites is a big plus for Fashion Editors.

Functionality 

Apple Watch - pre subbing

For us, this was most handy with organising our own individual show schedules. The Apple Watch was able to sync directly with our google calendar which saved us from having to input the data more than once. Being able to follow our schedules, direct from a watch was one of the most lifesaving features throughout LC:M.

To be clear, we aren’t “technophobic” cavemen, before the Apple Watch we weren’t using paper calendars and smoke signals to navigate shows and we do know that almost all smartphones can now perform some kind of calendar sync but sample bag in one hand, a copy of FAULT in the other, juggling an iPad and a champagne flute does not a fashionista make. With a flick of the wrist, one is able to check all the times of their upcoming events including said show’s location with ease.

Connectivity

Apple Watch - pre subbing

Staying connected during fashion week when you’ve commissioned a team of 10+ writers and photographers is not easy. Someone will get lost, someone will turn up at the wrong location and you’ll receive mountains of emails to your inbox all with “URGENT” in the subject line (despite many instances the issue being unqualified for such dramatics mind you…!) However communication is key and a blistering January is not the best of times to be emailing through sodden fingers. The Apple Watch syncs with your iPhone to allow you to read and reply to emails, texts and even answer calls. On the Apple Watch you’re able to quickly read an email without having to rudely brandish your phone or tablet in the middle of a presentation. We’re all sick of phones on the catwalk floor the Apple Watch makes for a better alternative.

Answering calls and writing emails are  one of the features while nice to have, in practise just looks a bit odd. Both functions are done via voice recognition which is surprisingly accurate compared to the other devices on the market. That being said, it just isn’t a good look. Communicating like a ‘Mighty Morphing Power Ranger’ was cute in the 90’s but in 2016 it’s either mightily ahead of it’s time or a decade late for it. Useful, somewhat? necessity? Not so much.

Credit to Apple as there weren’t many alternatives in this department. The watch face is but a mere 42x35mm, fitting a keypad would not have been appropriate and neither would a larger watch face so we have to commend Apple on not breaking their tradition of unrivaled design.

Necessity

smart-watch-821558_1920

I guess this is the question that you all are asking when reading this review. “Do I need the Apple Watch?”. To be frank, not really. You need the apple watch as much as you need bottled water, organic vegetables and designer clothing. Necessity it is not. Useful to have, it is.

We would argue that Apple didn’t create nor anticipate that the Apple Watch would be on the wrists of everybody everywhere. In it’s own right, the Apple Watch is innovative, creative but more importantly, useful. In the brief 2 weeks that we became accustomed to the device, we fell in love with the ease of checking emails, texts and keeping up with our calendars.

Not to mention, we’re recommending this product only based on its usefulness during fashion week. When we factor in the fact that it also has a great number of fitness apps – it is an extremely helpful product. Revolutionary as it may not be – as a product for the modern professional working within the fashion industry and outside, we’d definitely suggesting you give it a chance. Great things do indeed come in small packages and the AppleWatch is proof of that.

FAULT reviews Buttercup Bill

 

The first film from Sadie Frost and Emma Comley’s production company Blonde to Black Pictures, ‘Buttercup Bill’ is a chilling story of love, sex, mind games and dark desires.

BCB_9 low resDirected by, and starring, Remy Bennett – granddaughter of Tony Bennett – it follows long lost friends Pernilla (Bennett) and Patrick (Evan Louison) who reunite following the suicide of another childhood friend.

Despite the years that have gone past, there’s an undeniable chemistry between the two that starts with childish play fighting and escalates into games of sexual jealousy, using those around them as pawns. From the moment Pernilla arrives in the sweaty, free-spirited town in America’s Deep South where Patrick has been keeping his distance questions are raised and tensions get higher and higher. Why do these two soul mates resist their urge to be together? And could the death of their play mate have something to do with it?

Remy Bennett Buttercup Bill

Patrick and Pernilla Buttercup Bill

Having premiered at New Orleans Film Festival, Raindance and MARFA, it has now been released in the UK. With female directors and producers it’s a triumph for women in film as well as a gripping and brilliantly made story that puts a dark twist on the romantic notion of childhood sweethearts.

‘Buttercup Bill’ opens in cinemas today.

Alexander McQueen fever is officially in the air.

Inferno Alexander McQueen_Spread_12 Inferno Alexander McQueen_Spread_16 Inferno Alexander McQueen_Spread_15 Inferno Alexander McQueen_Spread_07

‘Inferno: Alexander McQueen’ by Kent Baker and Melanie Rickey

Five years after his untimely death, London is celebrating this genius London talent with two major exhibitions (‘Savage Beauty’ at the V & A and Nick Waplington’s ‘Woking Progress’ at the Tate Britain), alongside the stunning picture book ‘Inferno’ by Kent Baker and words by Melanie Rickey.

Focussing on one show- the breakout AW 1996 ‘Dante’, described as groundbreaking couture meets club culture, which took place at a Crypt in the midst of Jack the Ripper’s killing ground on a freezing March evening, in East London.

The venue in itself set the scene for mystery and intrigue, and the off the beaten track show was bound to be controversial with the fashpack who were keen to see what was next from the inventive young designer.

Coffee table book ‘Inferno’ is an insider’s view of that night. It showcases exclusive, intimate behind the scenes photographs, as viewed from the lens of fashion photographer Kent Baker; After meeting Lee through mutual friends, he casually asked if he could take document the evening, not imagining he would say yes!

The infamous show, set in the apparently haunted venue of Christ Church in Spitalfields, complete with skeleton on the front row, has never been re-created, but you can now see for yourself the buzz and excitement of the show preparation, unseen portraits, model shots, hissy fits and the master at work.

With words by fashion journalist Melanie Rickey, Lee’s peers, his ex, the creative teams, and models that walked for him, all tell their version of what it was like to know and work with the legend on the show. High energy, raw, dramatic, are all phrases that crop up time and time again, alongside tales of the freaky vibe, dark spirits and electricity, which make the anecdotes worth their weight in gold.

Known for always pushing the boundaries in fashion and production, this show was bound to be remembered- as a performance as well as the designs. With Lee once stating “You’ve got to know the rules to break them. That’s what I’m here for”

This is a book for everyone that agrees with that, and can appreciate couture, and a dark, thoughtful visionary. Long live that sentiment. Even now you’re gone.

By Sara Darling

Inferno: Alexander McQueen by Kent Baker and Melanie Rickey is published by Laurence King Publishing in March, available from www.laurenceking.com

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