The portrait of a Ngā Puhi chief by renowned artist Charles F. Goldie has sold at an Auckland auction for $1.8m.
The sale price for the portrait of Kamariera Te Hau Takiri Wharepapa at the International Art Centre last night surpasses the previous record for a Goldie painting, set last year.
Chief Wharepapa was an orator and intellectual who in 1862 visited Queen Victoria in England.
Goldie began painting the highly respected chief in 1907 in his Auckland studio and was believed to have finished it in 1931.
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International Art Centre director Richard Thomson said there was quite a bit of interest in the painting, and offers were made early on.
"It was a favourite of Goldie and was held in his private collection until he died in 1947.
"It is also considered to be probably the finest work he ever produced. It's a stunning work.
"We have been selling Goldie works for more than 50 years but we have never seen a
painting of such quality and with such provenance and that makes it unique and very
The painting was accompanied by several documents of authentication, including a letter from Goldie's wife Olive, confirming it was the work of her late husband, and a handwritten letter from Goldie confirming it was one of his favourites.
The previous record was set by Hori Pokai - A Sturdy Stubborn Chief, which was hidden for 100 years before it sold for $1.7 million in November.