Fledgling Wollongong artists have had their first encounter with the auctioneer's gavel at an art sale that left little to the imagination.
More than 80 nudes were bid upon in an auction that wound its way through the halls of the University of Wollongong creative arts building yesterday.
Now a nine-year tradition and fund-raiser for students' graduating exhibition, the Nude Auction is a chance for up-and-coming artists to test the market.
The exhibition was peppered with works by established artists including Leonie Watson, Madeleine Kelly, Michael Keighery and Jelle Van Den Berg, whose watercolour Nude Study fetched $370 - the highest bid.
President of UOW's Creative Arts Society, Hannah Gee, said students gained skills in exhibiting, curating and marketing and an understanding of what would and would not appeal to the art market.
"These are waters that need to be tested before stepping out into the industry, and to do it in a supportive environment makes all the difference," she said.
Mr Keighery, acting as auctioneer at yesterday's sale, said the event presented "absolutely brilliant" work.
"Nude auctions are always an opportunity for people to invest in the new talent that's coming out of the place," he said.
"Everyone really gets behind it," he said.
The event raised about $4500 for the graduating exhibition, called Look Sharp, on November 29.