Home of passion for the arts.

Based in Scotland, Exhibit is a third-generation, family-operated enterprise.

Exhibit curate rare home accessories of outstanding quality and craftsmanship, connecting with collectors, artists and traders, both at home and overseas.

Behind the name, our team of dedicated specialists provide authentic fine art to a worldwide audience. The collection reflects a stunning array of desirable antiques and collectible homeware that complement the shifting styles of today’s decor.

Meet the team

  • Nicola Smillie

    Managing Director


    For Nicola, Exhibit embodies a family legacy, one of wholesome values & fond memories passed down through generations.

    Weekend outings consisted of time spent climbing through castles, collecting trinkets from the market or getting covered in newspaper ink while helping dad at the fair. Spurring on a curious fascination wasn’t difficult and before long her admiration for the classical arts was second nature.

    Being introduced to the world of antiques at a young age has given Nicola a sixth sense for identification. While her time spent studying design, photography and the arts ensures our collection is always of the finest quality and presentation. Specially designed by Nicola for our users, her pride and joy is the Exhibit Articles area. She believes open access to a growing shared library of knowledge can serve to inform and inspire future generations of enthusiasts, collectors and specialists alike.

  • Alex Smillie

    Director, Customer Relations, Valuations


    Alex’s passion for fine craftsmanship has been passed down through generations of family tradition. Alex’s ancestor, William Cornwall, (a name he took when he came to Scotland in the 1840s) was a designer and potter at the renowned Portobello Pottery works. Today, some of his larger exhibition pieces can still be seen at the National Museum of Scotland.

    In the mid-1970s, Alex’s own father, William Smillie, discovered his own love of antiques and went on to become a self-taught furniture restorer with his own shop in the heart of Edinburgh. William also became a very early member of the Scottish Antique Pottery Society. By his mid-teens, Alex was submerged in the family business and surrounded by all manner of antiques.

    Upon inheriting a lifetimes collection, Alex, instead of auctioning the works, decided to study them, becoming particularly interested in antique glassware. Coming from a software development background he became a pioneer of online antique trading to a worldwide customer base and in 2002 founded an export business to the USA. Any free time was spent visiting historical sites with the wife and kids or wandering around humble antiquities stores with his mother Elizabeth, all of which became the inspiration for what is now Exhibit Antiques.

    Many years on, Alex’s experience in handling thousands of antiques is invaluable in ensuring accurate authentication and in sourcing the unusual and uncommon. His mother being a teacher has given him a passionate desire to share his knowledge with anyone who asks.

Our Inspiration

For years customers from all across the world have shared their histories and love of antiques. Becoming part of these stories inspired us to share our own. 

In true Scottish fashion; Below is a poem that was written by Nicola about her Grandfather, a man she’d never met but was inspired by none-the-less. It reflects her interpretation of the stories told to her by her grandmother.

Sweet William

There once was a man who hailed from Scotland, 
tall and kind with wispy hair. 
A husband and father with no change to spare, 
he toiled with strength, through all he could bear.

William Smillie, an odd name to be sure. 
A tradition of fathers who came before.
A settled life with a happy wife, 
is there much more to covet? In this, a short life.

Passing the torch came with more than a name, 
Accompanying him were the tools of a trade.
With toughening hands and the softening of years, 
his passions were found before 40 cheers.

Oils and chisels would be strewn around, 
as the fruits of his labour furnished the house.
All he would restore, his children did adore.
His wife, a picture, tripping around the store.

For every month passed, his collections did grow.
A seed had been planted that the seasons would sew.
From this, a man, humble and wise.
Our inspiration was sure to arise.