British art lovers play "hunt the masterpiece"

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LONDON, Nov 24 (Reuters) Britons played a potentially lucrative game of hunt the masterpiece today as they tried to snap up original artwork by the likes of Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin for just a few pounds.

The Royal College of Art's ''RCA Secret 2007'' exhibition in London allows collectors a chance to buy original postcard-sized works by contemporary artists for just 40 pounds (82 dollar).

The twist is that the artworks in the 2,500-strong collection are displayed anonymously and buyers only find out the name of the artist when they have bought their cards and the signature is revealed on the back.

Apart from Brit-Art bad boy and girl Hirst and Emin, leading artists Paula Rego and Maggi Hambling, shoe designer Manolo Blahnik and illustrator Quentin Blake are some of the big names who have designed original postcards for the show.

Other professional artists, designers and illustrators, plus up-and-coming graduates from the Royal College of Art have contributed postcards for the exhibition.

The event has run annually since 1994, with proceeds of the sale going to the RCA's Fine Art Student Award Fund.


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