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Duchess Kate doesn't need Prince William by her side to make a splash.

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The 30-year-old duchess of Cambridge made her first solo public appearance since marrying into the royal family, attending a preview of Lucian Freud paintings at the National Portrait Gallery in London on Wednesday.

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Wearing an affordable gray Jesire dress and 4-inch heels, Kate spoke with photographer Mary McCartney and her daughter, Bella Freud, inside the museum.

The National Portrait Gallery is one of the five causes Kate -- an art history major at St. Andrews University -- officially supports.

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Where was her beloved William, 29? The search-and-rescue helicopter pilot is currently deployed more than 7,500 miles away in the Falkland Islands, near South America.


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