Secret Postcard Auction

16 May 19

Bristol Art Gallery Events

Price: Regular price £10.00 Sale

Thursday 16 May, 6pm - 9.30pm

The ever-popular Secret Postcard Auction is back for another year. This hotly anticipated event offers the chance to purchase unique works of art by leading figures from the art and cultural world.

The 2018 Secret Postcard Auction included artworks by Antony Gormley, Grayson Perry CBE RA, Gilbert & George, David Bailey, Sam Toft, John Byrne RSA, Maggi Hambling, Marcelle Hanselaar, Ken Howard RA, Sir Richard Long RA RWA, Will MacLean RSA, Axel Scheffler, Helen Craig and Anthony Whishaw RA. 

All artworks measure c.7" x 5" (19 x 14 cm) and are signed on the back, so buyers either have to guess who the big name artists are or just buy what they like. Bidding on each work starts at just £40, which is a very reasonable price for a unique piece of art, and if it turns out to be by a Turner Prize winner or other leading artist, it might just be the bargain of the century! Ticket price includes a welcome drink and nibbles.

Your support is vital

By taking part in the Secret Postcard Auction you are supporting the RWA (Registered Charity 1070163), which receives only 2% of its operating costs from the public purse. Income from last year's Auction enabled us to offer family and adult learning activities for people from all backgrounds, and to carry out essential maintenance on our beautiful, listed building.

If you would like to make a larger donation to the RWA, please click here or contact our Head of Development, Kate Foster

How does the Secret Postcard Auction work?

Before attending the Secret Postcard Auction, bidders may like to take a look at our blog post explaining how the Secret Postcard Auction works.

You might also like to visit our Secret Postcard Exhibition prior to the Secret Postcard Auction. This exhibition offers the chance to see all of the postcards up close and to shortlist your favourites before the live event.

Online Bidding

Bidding on the postcards will commence two weeks before the Secret Postcard Auction via our online auction website—keep an eye on our newsletter for the link. The online auction will close the morning of the Secret Postcard Auction and final bids will be taken at the event. To improve your chances of securing your favourite artwork, we recommend purchasing tickets to the live auction.

Interested in buying art?

This exhibition will take place in our main galleries, alongside our Open Sculpture Exhibition. Your ticket to the Secret Postcard Auction will grant you out-of-hours access to this exciting exhibition, offering you the chance to browse and buy art from hundreds of emerging and established sculptors.

Please note that the galleries will be closed to the public on Thursday 16 and Friday 17 May 2019 for the Secret Postcard Auction.


We are grateful for the support of St Cuthberts Mill, The Print Company and Hollis Morgan Estate Agents and Auctioneers.

Hollis Morgan logo

Academicans' Gallery, RWA, Queen’s Road, Clifton Bristol BS8 1PX