Awakening Prison Art

 

AWAKENING  PRISON  ART

is an opportunity to own original, visionary artwork by an incarcerated spiritual aspirant while helping him afford the basics of a dignified life.
 

DAISHI 

is an American military veteran who served honorably in Vietnam and had a distinguished career as a photojournalist. Now serving a life sentence in a squalid Southern prison, he is deeply dedicated to spiritual study and meditative practice. He was devoted to raising rescue dogs for an outside organization and serving his inmate veterans' group till prison authorities recently terminated both activities. 

I've corresponded with Daishi since the early 2000's. His letters reveal an acute intelligence and heartbreaking sensitivity to beauty and human kindness. Like many prisoners, especially those without families, Daishi is indigent. He has no money for amenities like toothpaste, antiperspirant, stamps, tea bags, batteries for his radio, or art supplies to replace the ones that guards arbitrarily confiscate. I've encouraged him to send me his work, which I make available to the outside world.

DAISHI'S  WORK 

evokes new, freer worlds beyond his own constricted world. Some pictures are of imagined birds and other species — their eyes are particularly striking, gazing from their world into ours with determination, skepticism, joy, or apprehension. Other topics include loving portraits of dogs, Sacred Places, abstracted Vietnam reminiscences, close-ups of found objects, and portraits of characters from other galaxies and dimensions, where the epic Floro Wars rage on.  His media include very finely-detailed drawings made with colored pencils, improvised tints on scraps of salvaged fabric, and ethereal paintings made by dipping his finger in sunscreen and picking up colors from photos in National Geographic magazines. 

UPDATE SUMMER 2020 

Over the last few years Daishi has weathered numerous challenges, including a broken thumb on his drawing hand, broken or stolen eyeglasses, recovery from cancer surgery without pain medication, and a year in a hellish prison hospital living in close quarters with violent young psychotics. He listens to music and watches movies on his prison-controlled tablet computer when he can afford them and when the prison Wi-Fi is working. Other than that, his only escapes are meditation and sleep. This spring, despite his age and weak health, he was put on a grueling midnight shift in the kitchen, where the authorities ignored complaints of Covid symptoms till prisoners started passing out on the job. He was infected and quarantined in an isolation cell built for mentally ill inmates.

He has now recovered from Covid, but is in constant pain due to an arthritic left hip and knee. Because he is not allowed to have a cane and spent several weeks assigned to pushing heavy food carts, his right foot has become chronically swollen. 

Daishi is deeply grateful to all those who are supporting him with their prayers and their purchases of his art. He frequently asks me to express his appeciation to all of them. 

UPDATE FALL 2022 

Daishi is now, thankfully, in a much more humane institution where the inmates are treated with dignity, and his health has more or less stabilized for now. His physical condition no longer allows him to create art, but he continues to practice meditation, read voraciously, and enjoy music and movies on his tablet. Having in the past been shunted between prisons without warning, his main desire now is to remain where he is. 

 

CLICK ON ANY IMAGE TO ENLARGE IT. 

The scans below can't fully convey the delicacy of Daishi's line and his nuanced use of shade and color. The sizes listed are for the images themselves. Most are on acid-free paper at least a few inches bigger than the image size, with rough scalloped edges. Scissors are forbidden, so Daishi has to cut his paper to size with his thumbnail.  

One hundered percent of proceeds go to the artist. Pay what you feel — it's completely up to you. (You will be billed via PayPal.)
 

 

Thank you,

 

 

 

Dean Sluyter
DeanSluyter.com

Aftermath of a Dream Realized
3.5 x 2.5
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Aftermath on the Semoud Desert ...
4.5 x 3.5"
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Aldice/Family A-22 ...
3 x 3.5"
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Ambanek Neffradon
4 x 2.5"
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Apackathus Maximus
5 x 4"
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Appealing
3 x 2"
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The Art of Artificial Intelligence
2.5 x 2.5"
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Artifact from Roswell Crash Site, 1947
3.3 x 1.6"
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Bad Moon Rising
3.5 x 2.2"

Tint on acid-free paper

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Bahga Omhasum: Holy Man — Floro/D-6
3 x 3.5"
Tint on salvaged fabric and acid-free paper
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Calixza Illusiva
2.2 x 2.2"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Captain Gunney Freebird
3.5 x 3"
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Captain Howdy of the Dark Legion
5.5 x 3.5"
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Captain Wholeah Six
3 x 3"
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Captain Zinghar Rinslup ...
5 x 3.5"
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Cleptar Valdon — Elimination Specialist
3 x 3"
Pencil on acid-free paper
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Close
5 x 2.5"
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Condux Maximus
2.2 x 2.2"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Customs Specialist Sarma
2.3 x 2.4"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Czecmara #1: View from Within Kafka's Garden
3 x 2.3"
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Czecmara #2: View from Kafka's Window ... The Day the Germans Came
3.2 x 2.5"
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D-6 Portal
6 x 4"
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Day's End #1–4
6.8 x 3.7"
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Dr. Jarz Mahndowny — Field Surgeon, Floro Wars
2.5 x 4"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Dr. Millerman — Fleet
5 x 4.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Duke
3.2 x 3.2"
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Dunkirk Artifact
2.5 x 1.5"
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D–6/7517.17.23: This Morning I Witnessed . . .
3 x 4"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Echo / Pagan Island
6 x 3"
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Echo 2: Swamp Ghost
2.5 x 2"
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Echo 3 — Ghosts of War: The Knight
5 x 2"
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Eggy
3.5 x 2.5"
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Emergence
5 x 4"
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The Enlightenment
4.7 x 3.5"
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Enslaught Dimitnor — Floro
4.5 x 3.5"
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Eve: Colony 16 / First Born
3 x 2.5"
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Eye of Illusive Mangus`
3 x 2.5"
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Face Before Time
3.3 x 4.5
Colored pencil (?) on acid-free paper
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Face to Face
3 x 2"
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Fading Memory: Daisy
3 x 3"
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Fading Vision
4 x 3"
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Feeling Flighty
3.5 x 3"
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Field Sketch: Hunter
3.5 x 3.5"
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Field Sketch: Illusive Condormax
3.5 x 3.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Field Sketch: Seemorian Scout
3.5 x 6"
Pencil on acid-free paper
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Field Sketch: Tao of the Hound
2.5 x 4"
Ink on acid-free paper
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Field Study / Old Red
5 x 4"
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First Contact Deception
5 x 3"
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First Things Just Came to Be ...
4 x 4"
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Fish from Hell
3 x 2.5"
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From the Other Side #1
3 x 2"
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From the Other Side #2
3 x 2.5"
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Georgia on My Mind
4 x 3"
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Henge #1
3 x 2"
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Highlands Nighthawk
3 x 2.5"
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Hobnil of the East Pillar
3 x 2"
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Hotak Mumblus
3 x 2.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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I Have No Need of Your Wheel
7 x 3"
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Illusive Floro Spartanicus
3.7 x 2.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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In the Early Morning Mist
3.5 x 2.7"
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Indigo Castaways: Hint of Paris
3 x 3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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The Initiates
2.5 x 2.5"
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Insight
2.7 x 2"
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Into the Light
3.2 x 3"
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Isis Severs Nimrod's Head
5.7 x 3.5"
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It's Just a Cookie
2 x 2.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Kahla Minx / Medicine, Etc.
4 x 2"
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Keeper of Secrets
3 x 2.5"
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The Last Apple
2.5 x 3.3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Last Glance
2.7 x 2"
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The Last Look
3.3 x 2"
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Last Stand
3.5 x 2.2"
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Lives Beneath Teddy's Bed
3 x 3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Looking Out
3 x 3"
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Loss
3.5 x 2.5"
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Lost and Found
3 x 2.5"
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Lt. General Skitterning — Intelligence
2.5 x 2.8"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Lt. Souk De — Recon — Floro Wars
2.5 x 3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Major Zekhat / Floro Grand Council
3 x 3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Messenger
2.5 x 2.2"
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MJ12
3.7 x 2.7"
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Mother Ship
3 x 2"
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New Beginnings
6.5 x 3"
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Old Man
2.2 x 2"
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Once Upon a Time ...
3.7 x 3"
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Out of Time #2
4.2 x 4"
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Outcast Cletus
3.7 x 2.7"
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Outcast Petey
3.7 x 2.7"
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Outcasts / Toby #3
1.5 x 3"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Outcasts: Sasha
3.3 x 3"
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Party Animal
4.5 x 3.3"
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Path's End
4.5 x 3.3"
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Paying Respect
5.7 x 2"
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Preliminary Drawing: Watchers
2.5 x 2"
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Preparing for Death
4 x 3"
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Princess Akna
2.3 x 1.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Profmahn Zander
2.7 x 2.2"
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Queen Tomara, of the Little People, Awaits Her Final Curtain
5 x 2.5"
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Reaching Out
2 x 2"
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Red Tide
3.7 x 3.3"
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Reflect / 16 Scout Ship / Floro Mountain Cave
3.5 x 1"
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Return to Firebase
2 x 2"
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Ride Your Horse Along the Edge
6.3 x 2"
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Sacred Places / First Snow / Wilson Hollow
3.5 x 2.2"
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Sacred Places: Memory of Mirror Peaks
7 x 2.5"
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Saigon Matrix
3 x 1.5"
Tint on acid-free paper
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Saving Face
2.5 x 1.2"
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Seeing Is Believing
5 x 4"
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Sgt. Levy O'Haj — Recon and Recovery ...
4 x 2.5"
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Shape of Things to Come
2.7 x 2.7"
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Siren of Deep Space
3.7 x 3"
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Sky Over Podkamennaya Tunguska
3 x 3"
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Something Fishy
4.3 x 2.7"
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Spirit Guide
4.3 x 3.5"
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Spring Arrives — Kafka's Flower
2.3 x 2.3"
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Supreme Dulex
2.0 x 2.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Through Kafka's Bedroom Window ... The Approaching Storm
3.5 x 2"
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Torn Apart
2 x 1.7"
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Toys in the Attic — Little Alice
4 x 2.7"
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Trust Me ...
3 x 2.7"
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The Truth of Ascemtion
3.3 x 2.7"
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Uber Rhino in the Morning Mist
2.5 x 2.5"
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Up Against the Wall
4 x 2.5"
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Uqba ibn Nafi — Holy Desert Warrior
4.5 x 3.5"
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Valdor Doxis
2.5 x 2.5"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Very Rare Squakmore
2.5 x 2.5"
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View from Kafka's Window — The Visitor
3 x 2"
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Voyager — Running Silent
7.5 x 4.5"
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Waldo
3 x 2.7"
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We All Fall Down
3.5 x 2.5"
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Weathering the Storm
4.5 x 3.5"
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Wind Song Hill
2.3 x 2.3"
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Winter Comes ...
3.7 x 2.7"
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Witness
3 x 2"
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Wize One
4.5 x 7.5"

Tint on acid-free paper

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The Woodsman
3.5 x 1.7"
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X3Y2 / Terminator Prime
3.5 x 4"
Colored pencil on acid-free paper
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Zat: Intern — Gray Fleet — 1976 Abduction
3.3 x 2.3"
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Zerch Montaxica — Floro Desert
2.2 x 1.3"
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