TAAF 2021 stamp releases

TAAF 2021 stamp releases

TAAF 2021 stamp releases were a surprise. For those new to the area, TAAF stands for Terres Australes et Antarctiques Françaises, hence the reason it’s simply referred to as TAAF. I’m tempted to reuse the phrase “Oh where to start”  because there is so much to discuss. I’ll try to keep this brief. 

I’ve been holding off posting French stamps. Not because of the usual dearth of information, but the opposite.  While looking at various countries and territories, I thought I’d be smart and start with the French territories, after all, small post offices, small volume of stamps. That worked well for Andorra so “on to TAAF” I declared. Boy was I wrong. The stamps! The DESIGNERS! Some of my favourite French engravers were turning out drop dead gorgeous stamps for TAAF. So, I ended up spending a few delightful days chasing French designers down their various rabbit holes and popping up to discover new names and faces to admire. All in all, I have to say, my French comprehension improved a bit, and gained a renewed appreciation of engraving. 

It really was fun. I love researching stamps as much as I love collecting them. There’s something exciting about searching for information about a stamp that intrigues me or an artist who’s designs I’ve come to appreciate. It’s the hunt for information that lies at the heart of my love of philately. Oh France. Oh France! I dallied far too long with you.

TAAF – French Southern and Antarctic Lands

TAAF is the overseas territories of France that includes:

  1. Adélie Land (Terre Adélie), the French claim on the continent of Antarctica.
  2. Crozet Islands (Îles Crozet), a group in the southern Indian Ocean, south of Madagascar.
  3. Kerguelen Islands (Archipel des Kerguelen), a group of volcanic islands in the southern Indian Ocean, southeast of Africa, approximately equidistant between Africa, Antarctica and Australia.
  4. Saint Paul and Amsterdam Islands (Îles Saint Paul et Amsterdam), a group to the north of the Kerguelen Islands.
  5. The Scattered Islands (Îles Éparses), a dispersed group of islands around the coast of Madagascar.
    French Southern and Antarctic Lands – Wikipedia

A few familiar names among the TAAF 2021 stamp releases

TAAF managed to get some of France’s best to create their stamps. Engravers like Pierre Albuisson, Sophie Beaujard and Yves Beaujard as well as artists Sylvie Patte & Tanguy Besset made appearances. I’ve encountered their works many times over the years and, to be honest, was excited to see their names on the TAAF 2021 stamp releases.

I also discovered a new designer, C215  (Christian Guémy). He’s a street artist, who brings an urban style to his stamp work, not something you expect when looking at stamps about the remote Antarctic. Compare his Paul-Emile Victor to the others and you’ll see what I mean. His use of colours and broader strokes draws your eye to his work immediately.

There are a few artists lacking information. If I was unhappy with the way something translated or felt the content was lacking, I left the details off. This site is an ongoing project and eventually I’ll discover better info. In the meantime, enjoy the TAAF 2021 stamp releases. 

Engraved stamps

If, like me, you love to see engraved stamps still in use, check out Art du Timbre Gravé’s twitter account @ArtTimbreGrave. They often tweet about new stamp releases. Another must see site is Stamp Engravers. It is a massive database of engravers from around the world and is an essential resource.

Arpin Philately offers a brief, and easy to understand introduction to techniques of stamp engraving FAQ – How are engraved stamps produced? | The Stamp Echo (arpinphilately.com).

Mintage World goes into more details and breaks down types of engraving. How are Postage Stamps Printed? (mintageworld.com) Includes modern lithography as well. 

TAAF 2021 stamp releases – January  

Crabs 

 Crabs French Antarctic TAAF 2021 stamp releases

4 stamps in a souvenir sheet

Designer/engraver: Claude Jumelet

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Marion Dufresne in a bottle

Marion Dufresne in a bottle 

1 stamp

The Marion Dufresne is a research & supply vessel that sails into TAAF bases. It launched 1995 and is named for Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne

Designer:  Marie Detree-Hourriere
Detree-Hourriere has designed stamps for French since 2012. Her website shows an extensive portfolio that includes work from her role as official painter of the Navy, one of only 5 women to hold that position.

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Jellyfish

 Jelly Fish of Antarctic TAAF 2021 stamp releases

2 stamps on a souvenir sheet

Designer:   Pierre Albuisson
Albuisson has designed & engraved a number of stamps for France and it’s territories. Last year,  he created the Squids & octopus souvenir sheet for the TAAF. You can read about it here: So, you like cephalopods – an octopus stamp

Release date: January 1, 2021

 


 

The Apostle Islets, Crozet

The Apostle Islets, Crozet 

1 stamp on a souvenir sheet

Designer:  Raphaële Goineau
Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon painter, Goineau has designed stamps for La Poste since 1992. Her work can be seen on stamps from St Pierre as well as TAAF. 

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Flora of Kerguelen

Flora of Kerguelen

4 stamps

Designer: Julien Norwood
Norwood is a naturalist illustrator, who has worked on many books and posters, including the 2008 La biodiversité des mares à Paris and the 2007 Spices book. 

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Kerguelen and Crozet Cormorants

Kerguelen and Crozet Comorants TAAF 2021 stamp releases

1 stamp on a souvenir sheet

Designer: Nadia Charles

Specialist in colored pencil and graphite pencil, an original technique combined with other graphic techniques (ink, felt, dry pastel and airbrush) Nadia Charles makes drawings of a scientific nature. She notably draws illustrations for the National Museum of Natural History of Paris and that of Reunion, the INRA (National Institute of Agronomic Research) as well as for the T.A.A.F. (French Southern and Antarctic Territories). Nadia Charles Draughtswoman – Drawings / illustrations / Aérographie

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Maintenance of Relais 26

Maintenance of Relais 26 

1 stamp 

Designer: N Le Guillouzic 

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Coral Reefs of the Iles Eparses

Coral Reefs of the Iles Eparses TAAF 2021 stamp releases

2 stamps on a souvenir sheet

Designer: Elsa Catelin
Catelin also designed Monaco’s March 26, 2021 tribute to composer Camille Saint-Saëns.

I discovered intaglio engraving during a workshop during my studies in Rennes, in Bachelor of Plastic Arts. Fascinated by this medium, I joined the Estienne Nationale Supérieure School of Graphic Arts. I obtained my CAP engraving then Diploma of Arts and Crafts engraving in Paris, in 2000.

Curious about the graphic arts, I completed my training with different internships: the engraving of typographic punches at the cabinet of punches of the Imprimerie Nationale, the silkscreen printing of art at the Eric Seydoux workshop, the engraving of matrices for the stamping at Intaglio, Paris 17th, the printmaking at the Charlotte Reine workshop, the engraving of portraits with Yves Beaujard… Biography| Elsa Catelin

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Aviso-transport La Meurthe  

La Meurthe at Crozet

1 stamp

Designer/engraver:  André Lavergne
Lavergne recently published a book of his work:  André Lavergne, Peintures-gravures-aquarelles, 2021, 64 p, 190 illustr. (© A. Lavergne). You can see a few of his previous stamps here André Lavergne – Art of the Engraved Stamp (artdutimbregrave.com)

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Naval Captain Marooned on St. Paul, Pierre-Francois Peron, 1769-1846

Naval Captain Marooned on St. Paul, Pierre-Francois Peron, 1769-1846

1 stamp

Designer/Engraver: Sophie Beaujard
Beaujard won the Grand Prix de l’Art Philatélique in 2019 for her Montpellier stamp. She designed La Poste’s 2021 Napoleon stamp and the TAAF 43 anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Sea Lions of Amsterdam Island

Sea Lions of Amsterdam Island TAAF 2021 stamp releases

4 stamps on a souvenir sheet

Designer/Engraver: Line Filhon
Filhon designs stamps for France, TAAF, Saint Pierre and Michelon, French Polynesia and Monaco. She designed the Royal St Louis – Dreux Chapel for French post, and if conditions continue to improve in France, will be signing her work at Shop of the Royal Chapelle Saint Louis de Dreux, 2 square d ‘ Aumale, 28100 Dreux. on July 2, 2021.

Her first stamp was Royaumont Abbey, Val d’Oise, 2009 for La Poste

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Cabins at Pointe Basse, Crozet

Cabins at Pointe Basse, Crozet

1 stamp

Designer: Claude Perchat
The first stamp Perchat designed for French post was the Juliette Dodu, 2009 (with Marie-Noëlle Goffin engraving it). Her earlier work included creating postmarks for First Day Releases, design and layout of philatelic documents.  She also designed and authored La France à Vivre, Portraits de Régions,  a travel diary in 2004, which included stamps from various regions of France. 

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Basler BT67 Aircraft, Concordia Base

Basler BT67 Aircraft, Concordia Base 

2 stamps on a souvenir sheet

Designer: Pierre-André Cousin
Cousin started out as an architect and moved to graphic arts and design. Check out his work here ” In It ” – Pierre-Andre Cousin (pa-cousin.com) and don’t miss his inside works that show a wonderful sense of light and shadow. 

Release date: January 1, 2021

 


 

Andre Lebeau, 1932-2013

Andre Lebeau, 1932-2013 TAAF 2021 stamp releases

1 stamp

Designer: Yves Beaujard
Beaujard is one of the greats of French engravers. His first stamp for France was the 1999 Frédéric Ozanam. He has influenced a new generation of engraver and artists in France including his daughter Sophie Beaujard who designed 2 stamps for TAAF this year and Pierre Albuisson, who excels in engravings of marine animals. 

He won the Grand prix de l’art philatéliqeu in 2012 for his Andorra Casa de la Vall 2 stamp mini sheet.  He won the 2015  Grand prix de l’art philatéliqeu for his French stamp Paris Spring Stamp Exhibition. His Marianne et l’Europe was used by French Post from 2009 to 2013. 

 He previously worked for the US Banknote Company in Philadelphia, engraving banknotes and stock certificates.  He has illustrated over 30 books.  

If you have access to back issues of Stamp Magazine, the January #218 and February 2020 #219 have 2 articles featuring Sophie & Yves Beaujard. 

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

Chalcedony mineral

Chalcedony mineral

1 stamp

Designer: Claude Perchat
The TAAF minerals stamp series began in  1989 ( Analcime by Pierre Forget). Perchat began working on this series in 2014 (Fluorine).  

Release date: January 1, 2021


 

The TAAF are 65 years old

  TAAF anniversary  TAAF 2021 stamp releases

5 stamps on a souvenir sheet

Designers: Sylvie Patte & Tanguy Besset

 Beautiful or poetic images,
or useful or all
this together, accessible to all and who travel … the dream!
S&T (sylviepattetanguybesset.fr)

Their first stamp was the fun Halloween, 2001 for France. 

Release date: January 12, 2021


 

Southern lands and seas notebook

Southern lands and seas notebook 

12 stamps

 Release date: January 12, 2021

 


 

Paul-Emile Victor, 1907-1995

Paul-Emile Victor, 1907-1995 TAAF 2021 stamp releases

1 stamp on a souvenir sheet

Designer: C215  (Christian Guémy) HOME (c215.fr)

My works put invisible among the celebrities. Through these faces, I wish that passersby are confronted with their own humanity. 
C215 – french artist – street art – Christian Guémy – urban art (galerie-saint-martin.com)

Although this interview dates from 2016, it offers a bit of insight into C215’s creative process about stamp design. C215 Stamp centenary of Léo Ferré – French street artist (galerie-saint-martin.com)

Release date: January 12, 2021


 

June

The Antarctic Treaty 43rd Anniversary

The Antarctic Treaty 43rd Anniversary TAAF

The Antarctic Treaty TAAF 2021 stamp releases

1 stamp on a souvenir sheet, cancel

This block, offset printed, is embellished with a glittery partial varnish on the ice elements, as well as a embossing under the Antarctic continent  Sophie Beaujard | Facebook

Designer: Sophie Beaujard

Release date: June 12, 2021


 

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Christmas Island stamps for 2021

Christmas Island stamps for 2021

Christmas Island stamps for 2021 started off with the spectacular Year of the Ox set. It is one of the standout collections of the Lunar New Year issues from around the world.  Australia post issues stamps for Christmas Island, so you may recognise some of the artists & designers used over the years. The extensive Lunar New Year set was created by Chrissy Lau . I include a bit about her below if you aren’t familiar with her work.  

Christmas island map

Along with the usual stamps and FDCs, Australia Post will issue 4 postcards for the August Christmas Island sea turtles set.  When more info is released, I’ll add the designers name to the listing. 

Christmas Island stamps for 2021 

Lunar New Year – Year of the Ox

Year of the Ox Australia 2021 stamp showing a stylized oxYear of the Ox Australia 2021 stamp showing a stylized oxYear of the Ox Australia 2021 stamp showing a stylized ox  

gold sheetlet pack

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox gold souvenir sheet Christmas Island stamps for 2021Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox souvenir sheet cover Christmas Island stamps for 2021

Medallion & numismatic covers

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox numismatic cover  

Gutter strips

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox gutter strip Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox gutter strip Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox gutter strip

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox sheetlet Christmas Island stamps for 2021

Prestige Booklet

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox  

Sheet

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox sheet Christmas Island stamps for 2021

Covers

Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox FDC Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox airmail Lunar New Year - Year of the Ox pictorial envelope 

Sheetlet pack

 The full Chinese zodiac presented in stamp souvenir sheet Christmas Island stamps for 2021

3 stamps, mini sheet, FDCs, cancel, airmail cover, pictorial cover, sheetlet, medallion cover, calendar pack, presentation booklet, postcard, 3 gutter strips, gold sheetlet pack (888 were released)

Australia Post also has a full Chinese zodiac souvenir sheet displaying all the animals and years they are associated with. It would round out a Lunar New Year collection.

 Interested in seeing more Lunar New Year stamps from around the world? Check my page on Year of the Ox stamps:

2021 Year of the Ox stamps worldwide

Designer/ original art: Chrissy Lau
When I wandered through her site, I realised I’ve seen her art before. She designed Guernsey Islands Year of the Rat stamp series last year. Check out her distinctive style on her website: Chrissy Lau | Artist Illustrator | Portfolio.

Release date: Jan 8, 2021


Christmas Island Sea Turtle 

 Christmas Island sea turtle cancel Christmas Island stamps for 2021

sea turtle two Christmas Island stamps for 2021 Sea turtle three Sea turtle one Christmas Island stamps for 2021 Sea turtle four  

Souvenir sheet & FDCs

Sea Turtle sheet Christmas Island stamps for 2021 Seaturtle FDC with souvenir sheet   Sea turtle FDC two  

Postcards

Sea turtle postcard two Christmas Island stamps for 2021 Sea turtle postcard three 

Sea turtle postcard one Sea turtle postcard four Christmas Island stamps for 2021

4 stamps, 2 FDCs, cancel, souvenir sheet, 4 postcards

  • Green Sea Turtle
  • Hawksbill Turtle

Release date: August 10, 2021

See more stamps: Watching out for new Australia 2021 stamps  and Norfolk Island 2021 lizards & snails oh my

If you enjoyed this article, consider supporting Bitter Grounds via the little coffee cup on the bottom left. I’ll do the heavy lifting in getting the material sorted and you can sit back and enjoy.

PATREON SUPPORT -> Check out the Patreon tiers: Instant Coffee $2 a month, Espresso Shot $5 month, Espresso & Stamps $10 per month, or Deluxe Mocha & Box of Stamps tier – $25 per month. Visit my Patreon page and see what perks come with membership.

Cocos Island stamps for 2021

Cocos Island stamps for 2021

Cocos (Keeling) Islands is a small archipelago in Australian territory. Australia Post issues stamps for the island so the designs should look familiar.  Cocos Island stamps are limited to one to two per year, so we might see another one by fall.  

Map showing Cocos (Keeling) Islands

 

Cocos Island stamps May issue

Manta Rays 

Manta cancel Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Manta Rays Cocos (Keeling) Islands Manta Rays Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Manta Rays Cocos (Keeling) Islands  Manta Rays Cocos (Keeling) Islands

 Manta Rays from Cocos (Keeling) Islands

Manta Rays Manta Rays Cocos (Keeling) Islands Manta Rays 

Manta Rays gutter strip Manta Rays gutter strip from Cocos (Keeling) Islands Manta Rays gutter strip Manta Rays gutter strip

4 stamps, 4 gutter strips, 2 FDCs, cancel, unstamped FDC, mini sheet

Designer: The incredible Jo Muré
If you are a collector of Australian stamps, you have many of her designs in your collection. She is one of the great stamp designers of the modern era. Muré’s first stamp was the 1993 350th Anniversary of naming of Christmas Island. She has designed over 100 stamps for Australia and it’s territories.  This article is an older interview with her, but it’s a fun read Meet a Philatelic designer: Jo Mure – Australia Post (australiapostcollectables.com.au)

Release date: May  8, 2021

While your here, take a look at Norfolk Island’s offerings.  

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Norfolk Island 2021 lizards & snails oh my

Norfolk Island 2021 lizards & snails oh my

Australia Post issues a small number of stamps for Norfolk Island each  year. For flora and fauna collectors, it’s a bonanza of beautiful stamps.   

Norfolk Island map

Initially, I listed Norfolk with Australia’s stamps, but as time moved along, I realised they needed their own listing.  Like many things in life, this project has evolved far beyond what I envisioned at the beginning of the new year.  If you’d like to support Bitter Grounds, check out the info at the bottom of the page. Subscribe, support and enjoy. 

If you are looking for Australian stamps for 2021 they can be found here:  Watching out for new Australia 2021 stamps | Bitter Grounds Magazine

Norfolk Island 2021 Stamps Feb

Norfolk Island Lizards

Post mark for the Lizard stamps of Norfolk Island showing a gecko Norfolk Island 2021 and skink

Norfolk Island lizard one Norfolk Island 2021 Norfolk Island gecko Norfolk Island 2021

 Norfolk Island souvenir sheet with 2 stamps  Norfolk Island 2021

Norfolk Island lizards FDC Norfolk Island 2021 Norfolk Island 2021 Norfolk Island envelope showing 2 lizards Norfolk Island 2021

 Norfolk Island gutter strip of skinks

Norfolk Island gutterstrip of geckos

2 stamps, souvenir sheet,  FDC, cancel,  2 gutter strips of 10

Predation by the ship rat on Lord Howe Island – key threatening process listing | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Designer: Jason Watts
Watts also designed 2020’s September Sydney to San Francisco mail steamer service stamp and the World Heritage Australia series from Oct.

Release date: Feb. 9, 2021


 

Norfolk Island 2021 Stamps June

Land Snails – preserving the snails of Norfolk island

Snails cancel

Land snails 2 Greenwoodoconcha nux Norfolk Island 2021Norfolk Island landsnails  Duritropis albocarinata

Snails cancel  Norfolk Island 2021 First Day Land Snails Minisheet Cover Norfolk Island 2021

Greenwoodoconcha Nux Stamps

Duritropis Albocarinata Stamps

2 stamps, souvenir sheet, 1 FDC, cancel, 2 gutter strips

  • Greenwoodoconcha nux
  • Duritropis albocarinata

Original artwork by wildlife artist Janet Matthews
Designer: Simone Sakinofsky, Australia Post

Preserving the land snails of Norfolk Island – Australia Post (australiapostcollectables.com.au)

Release date: June 22, 2021


 

Norfolk Stamps July

Norfolk Island Museum Maritime Models

  FDC cancel of a rope knot

Norfolk Island 2021 HMS Sirius  Norfolk Island 2021 HMAS Supply

Norfolk   minisheet

Norfolk  FDC two stamps Norfolk Island 2021 FDC with minisheet

2 stamps, mini sheet, blank cover, FDC, cancel, 2 gutter strips

Images will be updated when the stamps are released

If you are interested in Norfolk history, take a look at the Norfolk Museums’ Facebook page. They update it regularly.

Designer: Stacey Zass

Release date: July 23, 2021


 

If you enjoy reading about stamps, you can help with a donation via the little coffee cup on the bottom left. I’ll do the heavy lifting in getting the material sorted and you can sit back and enjoy.

PATREON SUPPORT -> Check out the Patreon tiers: Instant Coffee $2 a month, Espresso Shot $5 month, Espresso & Stamps $10 per month, or Deluxe Mocha & Box of Stamps tier – $25 per month. Visit my Patreon page and see what perks come with membership.

Azerbaijan’s 1st stamps – something old; something new

Azerbaijan’s 1st stamps – something old; something new

Years ago I bid on a small lot of pre-1940 stamps. It was a bit of a jumble box, filled with odds and ends from older collections. But it included a couple airmails I wanted so I tossed in a bid and won.  Buried inside was an introduction to a country I had little experience with as a collector, Azerbaijan.  

First something old – Azerbaijan’s 1st stamps

The first stamps that caught my eye were the Soldier with Flag and Rifle issues from 1919-1920.  They are part of a 10 stamp series that had 2 printings. The first, on white paper in 1919 and the second on buff paper with a yellow or no gum in 1920.  

Soldier with Flag and Rifle issues from 1919-1920 Azerbaijan's 1st stamps Soldier with Flag and Rifle issues from 1919-1920 Azerbaijan's 1st stamps

They don’t  scan well which means the colours are off and the paper appears white on the screen. That’s the thing people have to remember when scanning their stamps, the colours don’t always transfer properly.  The stamps in my collection are yellowish on the back and definitely not on white paper.  When I have time, I’m going to pull out my 35mm & tripod. With correct lighting, I can often duplicate tricky colours. That will have to wait awhile.

I wasn’t lucky enough to get all 10 of Azerbaijan’s 1st stamps. Although they aren’t expensive, I’ve just never had the opportunity to grab the entire series. The third stamp, of the 1919-1920 set I found, was the Farmer at Sunset.

Azerbaijan's 1st stamps farmer and sunrise

I have never been able to find out who the original designer was. A lot of that information is lost in the historical mess we’ve made over time. And I suspect this may be the case with the artist in question. If anyone has a lead on the designer, I’d appreciate a note.  There were a few others in the little envelope from 1920 and 1921.  

Blacksmiths from the 1922 set.

Azerbaijan Blacksmiths stamp 1921

And these charity stamps for hunger victims, issued 1922 as well.  They are Widows & Orphans and Carrying Food to Sufferers. 

Azerbaijan Charity Issue 1921 Azerbaijan's 1st stamps  Azerbaijan Charity Issue 1921 Azerbaijan's 1st stamps

To my eye, they look like they were drawn by the same artist. The original scans I did, allowed me to blow each up into a huge format so I could make a detailed examination. Each stamp has a matching structure and the people are similarly drawn. Look at the arms, hands and faces.  They appear to be drawn by the same hand.

There is something wonderful about these sets and I like to think of them as small time capsules of Azerbaijan at the cusp of a changing world. They are beautiful pieces of folk art.  

Forgeries? Authentic? I’ve never been able to decide.  A lot of forgeries abound and I’d be bitterly disappointed if they are. It’s not the monetary value, it’s the sense I’m holding a link to the past in my hands. I use sites like Stamp Forgeries and check their substantial database to help me out. Stamp forgeries of Azerbaijan 1919 | Stamp forgeries of the World offers close up views of authentic and forged stamps.  Although I purchased these from a reputable source, there’s always the chance of forgeries slipping through, especially when buying stamps I’m not familiar with. Both seem to have the finer details lacking in the forged versions, especially around the printed Republique d’ Azerbaijan. But, I’m not an expert. 

Now for something new

In 2019, Azerbaijan issued a reproduction of the first 4 stamps on the 100th anniversary of their issue. Individual stamps, a souvenir sheet, FDC and evocative cancel are all part of the series.

  100th Ann. OF Azerbaijan's 1st stamps

Azerbaijan's 1st stamps - reprint for 100th anniversary

Designer Leyla Gulaliyeva created this tribute and did a fine job. I’d like people to remember the names of stamp designers. They take an idea and make it come to life for us. In this case, Gulaliyeva’s work does justice to the 1919 series. She doesn’t over design the set, and avoids the pitfalls of creating an overly linear layout. It’s an eye catching set. 

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