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Early Goldie portrait of mystery Maori man expected to fetch $400,000 at auction Found in: NZ Herald - 7th May

One of Kiwi artist Charles Frederick Goldie's first Maori portraits is expected to fetch $400,000 when it is auctioned in Wellington next week.

The large oil painting, Tamehana, is to be auctioned at Dunbar Sloane on Wednesday.

Director of fine and applied arts Helena Walker said it was originally thought the work, painted in 1900, was of Wiremu Tamihana, the great Ngati Haua chief known as the "king maker".

It was later discovered the painting had been misidentified. It is not known who the mystery Tamehana is, but Walker said it must have been someone important.

"To be painted by Goldie, he must have been of some note," she said.

The painting is the partner of Goldie's best known portrait of 1900, Tamehana in Life.

That painting resides at the Auckland Art Gallery.

Tamehana was originally bought by well-known Hawkes Bay businessman and art collector Ernest Vogtherr at Bethune & Co Wellington, September 1962.

It has subsequently been on long term loan at Hastings City Council from 1976 to 2016.

"The portrait is of absolutely superb quality, it's really unique," Walker said.

She expected a large turnout for the auction, which would be "really, really positive".

The estimated auction value is $300,000 - $400,000.

- NZ Herald