Goldie painting from the 1900s sells for over half a million dollars

Charles F. Goldie’s painting ‘Memories’ Rakapa, an Arawa Chieftaincy, was sold for over half a million at an Auckland auction. Photo / Supplied

A painting of an Arawa Chieftainship by legendary New Zealand’s artist Charles Frederick Goldie was sold for more than half a million dollars at an Auckland Auction last night.

‘Memories’ Rakapa, an Arawa Chieftaincy, was painted by Goldie in 1910. The wāhine had written many favorite waiata (songs) reo Māori.

Originally from Otaki, Rakapa married into Arawa and her waiata were and remain the songs of Rotorua kaumātua (Māori elders) as well as those of the Ngāti Toa and Ngāti Raukawa.

Rakapa’s family by marriage, fought for the colonial government in the New Zealand Wars of the mid-19th century.

Goldie chose to paint Rakapa on at least five occasions, three times in 1910 and twice in 1911.

The painting’s starting price was $400,000 and the work attracted eight buyers. The winning bid was for $450,000; the price later rose to $540,540 after including the buyer’s premium and GST.

Charles F. Goldie's painting 'Memories' Rakapa, an Arawa Chieftaincy, was sold for over half a million at an Auckland auction.  Photo / Supplied
Charles F. Goldie’s painting ‘Memories’ Rakapa, an Arawa Chieftaincy, was sold for over half a million at an Auckland auction. Photo / Supplied

The sale was held by auctioneer, International Art Center director Richard Thomson, who said Goldie was New Zealand’s distinguished Māori portrait painter.

“Without a doubt he captured his sitters ‘as they were’. He is the most sought after post-20th Century artist.

“He has proven time and time again to be a solid investment for those looking to invest outside of other volatile and unpredictable markets.”

Thomson said the center had sold three of the artist’s works previously, each auctioned for over $1m.

“Last night’s was one of his smallest scale pieces but equally sought after.”

Charles F. Goldie was one of New Zealand's most distinguished artists.  Photo / Supplied
Charles F. Goldie was one of New Zealand’s most distinguished artists. Photo / Supplied

Goldie was considered the “finest painter of kaumātua” and people of importance. He died in 1947.

Earlier artworks of the painter include the portrait of a Ngāpuhi chief which was sold for $1.8m in April.

The sale of ‘Important and Rare Art’ at the International Art Center featured other highly regarded artists such as Gottfried Lindauer, whose oil painting Girl with Gourd was bought for $290,000 (excluding the buyer’s premium and GST), well above its estimated starting price of $220,000.

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