RCA Secret anonymous postcard exhibition set to return

The Royal College of Art’s annual exhibition and sale has previously seen the likes of Margaret Calvert, Grayson Perry and James Dyson donate original pieces of work.

The Royal College of Art’s (RCA) elusive, anonymous postcard exhibition is set to return this September for the 24th year.

The exhibition will feature over 2,000 postcard-sized artworks by a selection of designers, illustrators and artists. Contributors range from well-known, professional designers to current RCA students.

All postcards sold at same price

Each postcard is priced at £55 and sold without the buyer knowing the identity of the designer. It is then revealed once they have made their purchase, encouraging people to pick their favourite designs rather than their favourite artists.

The mini artworks range across disciplines, from photography and collage to drawing, painting, sculpture and embroidery.

RCA Secret was launched in 1994, and offers people the opportunity to buy original pieces of anonymous art, alongside raising money for the postgraduate college.

All profits from sales go towards the RCA Student Award Fund, which funds students’ scholarships to the arts college. All the designers donate their work without a fee.

Buy online throughout week-long exhibition

Designers and artists who have previously contributed to the project include coveted British road sign designer Margaret Calvert, David Bailey, Thomas Heatherwick, Anish Kapoor, James Dyson and Grayson Perry.

To take part in the sale, buyers must register on the RCA Secret website to gain a buyer’s ID from 8 September onwards.

They can then buy their chosen postcards online throughout the duration of the exhibition. Postcards can then be collected on 16 September, or will be posted to buyers.

This online buying system aims to provide “more opportunities to buyers” and means all postcards remain on display for the duration of the exhibition for visitors, says the RCA.

Dr Paul Thompson, rector at the college, says: “The annual RCA Secret exhibition is a unique and exciting art-world moment when a small part of the global contemporary art market is made accessible to all.”


The RCA Secret exhibition takes place 9-15 September at the RCA, Dyson Building, 1 Hester Road, London SW11 4AN. Online purchases can be made throughout the duration of the exhibition, and postcards will be posted or can be collected from the RCA on 16 September.

A selection of this year’s anonymous postcards:

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