Becoming the unknowing owner of a priceless piece of art is the stuff that dreams are made of. Whether it’s that Renaissance painting found in a French kitchen that sold for 24 million euros, or another French man who found a lost Caravaggio masterpiece in his attic that went for $171 million, the stories of stumbling across a crazy valuable piece of art are pretty thrilling.
Now, for all art fans in Sydney, this very same feeling (perhaps not on quite the same value scale) could become a reality, thanks to the Incognito Art Fair – a massive art sale where every artwork on sale is $100 a pop – you choose an artwork you love the look of, but you only get to find out who the artist is after you buy it.
This Russian Roulette-style art show kicks off on Saturday, July 15 and will feature original works by the likes of Ken Done (yes, really), 2023 Archibald Prize Winner Julia Gutman, and a whole host of 2023 Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prize finalists, including the illustrious likes of Abdul Abdullah, Eliza Gosse and Jason Phu. This means that if you’re lucky, you could walk away with an actually really valuable artwork for just 100 bucks. It’s a yes from us.
One of the real points of the Incognito Art Show, though, is taking on the exorbitant wankery of the art world and getting rid of the whole ‘I'm buying this thing I don’t really like the look of but I'm gonna do it because it’s by a big name’ thing. This art fair is about getting an artwork you actually love – regardless of whether it’s made by a high school student or a national treasure. Plus, all the profits of this sale are set to get donated to Studio A and Little Orange Studio, art companies that support artists with disabilities.
More than 5,000 artworks (all A5 sized) will be on sale, and they'll sell on a first come, first served basis in person at the Verona Gallery at 17 Oxford Street in Paddington. There will be a limit of three artworks per buyer. Doors will open from 8am to 6pm on Saturday, and from 10am to 5pm on Sunday, and all works that don’t get sold on the weekend will be available to buy online in the week commencing July 16.
So, if you’re looking for a little adrenaline buzz, a little mystery, and a cheap, beautiful and wholesome addition to your life, think about weaving this into your weekend plans. It definitely looks worth it.