Auction houses say Asia's appetite for art and antiques is growing at a huge rate.

Interest in Asian art is also on the rise.

Sotheby's has an auction of fine Asian, Australian and European art in Melbourne next week.

Asia specialist at Sotheby's Australia, Ann Roberts, told Radio Australia's program interest is coming from many places.

"We have mainly Chinese pieces in the current sale and so we get a lot of interest from people from mainland China," she said.

"(And) from Hong Kong, Taiwan and from the South East Asia, Singapore."

Ms Roberts says the growing middle class in China is increasingly turning to art for a variety of reasons.

"They've become very interested in their culture and their history and they're now in a position where they can collect works of art," she said.

"They're very interested in collecting and they do see it as a very sort of safe form of investment.

"There's a huge demand and, of course, the supply doesn't increase that much, so prices are certainly escalating."

The upcoming Sotheby's auction includes art, ceramics, carvings and ivory pieces among other items.

Ms Roberts says an embroidered blue silk Dragon robe is expected to sell for more than $US20,000.

"It is 19th century from the Ching Dynasty," she said.

"It's couched in gold with nine dragons, and then it's embroidered with all sorts of auspicious emblems."

But as art sales rise and more collectors enter the market, Ms Roberts is warning consumers to be wary of fakes.

"Very good copies are made and there are a lot of pieces purporting to be a genuine item from a previous period that actually has been made so well that it's actually very hard to tell whether it is a recent piece or a genuine article from a previous era," she said.