Rare paintings of three venerated rangatira have caught the attention of their descendants as their auction draws near.
The portraits of Atama Paparangi, Wiripine Ninia and Hera Puna painted by European painter Charles F Goldie are expected to fetch well over $500,000.
Northland Te Rarawa iwi spokesperson Haami Piripi says the great chief Atama Paparangi lived for 100 years and guided his tribe through tumultuous changes.
Mr Piripi says Goldie painted Atama Paparangi throughout his lifetime, capturing the leader as he aged.
A portrait of Hera Puna, painted in 1933, is expected to reach up to $350,000. She was renowned for her bravery: during the Battle of Orakau in Waikato in 1864 she protected her husband by standing in front of a soldier, giving her husband time to reload his gun.