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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 April, 2003, 12:11 GMT 13:11 UK
Selfridges hosts naked art show
Participants at Selfridges
Selfridges's escalators formed part of the installation
Five hundred people have stripped off to strike a pose at a flagship London department store - all in the name of art.

Selfridges's Oxford Street store has become the latest venue to host an installation by New York-born artist Spencer Tunick.

A largely young crowd of nude Londoners posed on escalators and in various departments during the morning, before the shop opened to the public on Sunday.

Participants have been promised a print of Tunick's photograph in return for their time.

It is the latest in a series of installations across the world by the artists famous for photographing nude crowds in urban landscapes.

Bodies are composed into sculptural shapes and bizarre formations to feature on the streets of buildings, streets and cityscapes.

'Nude happening' at Saatchi gallery
About 160 nude people took part in an installation at the Saatchi gallery
Previous venues, including a street in Montreal, Canada and a public park in Sao Paulo, Brazil have attracted thousands of participants.

Earlier this month the artist used 160 nude volunteers to open the new Saatchi gallery on the banks of the Thames.

Sunday's installation is a departure for the artist, as he swapped the open air for the interior of Selfridges.

It will also be a first for the store, which has been running its own tribute to the human form with a month-long Body Craze event.

Mr Tunick told BBC London: "Usually people do it outdoors because there is an amount of tension and vulnerability in the body that comes up against the concrete world.

"That tension creates a desire to be nude in a public place outside.

"I'm just happy that people wanted to engage in indoor space."

The BBC's James Ingham
"The nudes seemed willing models"

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