About us

We have London’s largest selection of well-provenance, quality Asian, Islamic, Colonial and Tribal antiques.

Our gallery, where all our stock is located, is situated in the heart of central London, just off Regent Street.

We help build private collections, and we understand that our clients don’t collect objects so much as they collect stories, and in so doing, they help preserve culture and history. We also sell to many public museums and institutions – having sold around 160 separate items to around 30 museums worldwide in the last few years.

We produce each month a catalogue of items which is distributed by email to almost 10,000 clients and contacts.

Sound provenance is extremely important to us. All our stock is sourced from old UK and European collections only. We do not source items from Asia or from other original source locations.

Michael Backman

Michael Backman, the gallery founder, is the author of eight books that cover all aspects of Asia – from culture to politics & business, and is a past newspaper columnist. Published by Macmillan and John Wiley & Sons, editions of his books have appeared in English, Chinese, Spanish, Vietnamese and Indonesian. One, Asian Eclipse, was named by The Economist among its ‘Books of the Year’ and appeared on several bestseller lists.  He is also the author of Rare Antique Asian & Colonial Decorative Arts (Paul Holberton Publishing, 2016), a biography of a senior Malaysian politician (2018), and a forthcoming book on Malay gold & silverware. Past positions include being Senior Advisor to the Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Australian Senate, a Senior Analyst in the Australian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and working in the private sector in Jakarta. He holds a First Class Honours Degree in Economics, and is an elected Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society.

He has travelled to almost every Asian country (among many others), and prior to living in London, lived & worked in Jakarta, Paris, Melbourne, Adelaide and Canberra.

Eddie Chin

Eddie Chin is originally from Malaysia and is fluent in Malay, Indonesian, Mandarin, Cantonese, Hakka, French & English. He is a fully qualified chartered accountant, and holds an MBA. Past positions include working with the London office of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.  He looks after all the tax, export & accounting issues for the Gallery, & assists on African Tribal Art.

Sarah Corbett

Sarah Corbett is a renown specialist in non-European jewellery with a strong focus on the arts & cultures of Northern Africa & the Maghreb. She has authored many articles on these topics. She has lead many highly-regarded jewellery tours to Northern Africa. She also has a strong interest in social media development & marketing. She assists the Gallery in both these areas.

Michael Backman lecturing at the School of Oriental & African Studies, University College London, on the role of dealers.

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Books by Michael Backman