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Andrew Wyeth Collection, The Museum of Modern Art, New York/AP

Human Race

Human Race

Issue: "The Obama era," Feb. 14, 2009

DIED: Artist Andrew Wyeth, perhaps best-known for his "Christina's World" depicting a crippled woman struggling to reach a farmhouse on top of a hill, died Jan. 16 at the age of 91. Though some analysts considered Wyeth to be the most popular American artist of the 20th century, the son of illustrator N.C. Wyeth was considered an anomaly in the modern art world. His bleak portrayals of the countryside were often set in winter and featured muted earth tones-a style Wyeth once characterized as "seeing a lot in nothing." He shunned abstract art and embraced a rural realism that emphasized emotion and, at times, highlighted spiritual themes.

PASTORAL CALL: Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church announced Jan. 18 that it has invited William Graham Tullian Tchividjian, the grandson of evangelist Billy Graham, to serve as the church's new senior pastor. Tchividjian, 36, will succeed church founder Dr. D. James Kennedy, who died in September 2007.

APPOINTED: New York Gov. David Paterson chose Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., 42, to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The appointment lasts until 2010 and earned criticism from those who question Gillibrand's liberal bona fides: The National Rifle Association endorsed her and she voted against last fall's financial rescue package.

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PROTECTED: An engaged U.K. couple, who learned last month that their unborn twins share a single body, are ignoring doctors' calls to abort the babies even though there is only about a 20 percent chance they will survive after birth. The rare conjoined twins, said the couple, "are a gift from God and we're determined to give them a chance of life."

FEARFUL: The Iraqi journalist who hurled his shoes at former President Bush during a Dec. 14 press conference plans to seek political asylum in Switzerland because he fears for his life in Iraq. Muntadhar al-Zaidi, 29, must await release from prison, where he is awaiting trial, before filing a formal asylum request.

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