'Just psychotic' - Can you find a profitable art investment among this rabble?


The Royal Academy's Summer Exhibition opens on June 7 and promises to offer  delights for alternative investors hoping to find the next "big thing", if they look hard enough.

The exhibition is the largest open submission contemporary art show in the world. Anyone can put their piece forward for display, albeit with the help of a fee, and most are available to buy.

Now in its 243rd year, the exhibition often provokes the ire of art critics for its willingness to showcase works of debatable merit.

Indeed, this year's exhibition coordinator Christopher Le Brun has already commented on the differing quality of the pieces.

The RA's Summer Exhibition has been running since 1769

Le Brun explained that Royal Academicians - some of the leading artists of the day - are embarrassed at several submissions from the public.

"They are embarrassed because there is a question of quality," he told British newspaper the Independent.

"We can only show what we've been sent in, so we describe ourselves simply as the 'hosts' of the exhibition."

He added that many of the amateur submissions were "not terribly good" and some "just psychotic".

But encouragingly for the bargain-eyed alternative investor, Le Brun stresses: "There are [good] things amongst them but you have to look hard."

Despite the divergent quality of the works on display at the Royal Academy's exhibition, many up-and-coming artists can offer terrific entry-level purchases for art lovers and investors alike. 

For example, the Hollywood actor and collector Dennis Hopper once purchased an Andy Warhol artwork for just $75 during Warhol's earlier period... Needless to say, it would be worth significantly more today.

Alongside the newbie artists in the expo, the show will also feature more established artists including Tracy Emin and Antony Gormley, as well as US sculptor Jeff Koons.

11,000 works are on display at the exhibition, which runs until August 15.

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