Two artworks depicting renowned Tasmanian indigenous leaders have been withdrawn from sale.

The busts of Truganini and Woureddy were due to be auctioned tonight by Sotheby’s but have been taken off the list, after protests from Tasmanian Aborigines.

They were expected to fetch up to $700,000.

In a statement, the auction house said the items were withdrawn in consultation with the vendor to ensure the safety of staff and the public, and to protect the works.

“Sotheby’s has immense respect for the Indigenous culture, as demonstrated by our strong record in Aboriginal Art,” the statement read.



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Gallery: Sotheby's Australia ,