Art And Culture

Restored Golden Palm Unveiled in Park Mellat

Restored Golden Palm Unveiled in Park MellatRestored Golden Palm Unveiled in Park Mellat

The unveiling ceremony of the restored Golden Palm, a statue sculpted 40 years ago by the late Finnish artist Eila Hiltunen, was held at Tehran’s Park Mellat recently.

 The artwork was installed in the park in 1975 when it newly opened. Over the years, due to wear and tear the palm’s golden color changed to a dark shade. After six months of repair and polishing, it has now been restored to its original glory.

Organized by the Iran-Finland Friendship Association and Tehran’s Municipality District 3, the event was attended by Finnish Ambassador Harri Kamarainen, Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi, Iranian Ambassador to Finland Kambiz Jalali and other officials from both sides, Mehr News Agency reported.

Head of Iran-Finland Friendship Association Ahmad Donyanour said, “The Golden Palm represents Finnish art and culture in Iran and cultural ties between Tehran and Helsinki. Art can also help the two countries have closer relations.”

On the 90th anniversary of Iran-Finnish ties, Araghchi said, “Hiltunen was one of the celebrated artists in Finland. We are honored to host her work in our country.”

The unveiling of the restored artwork in the new atmosphere brought about by the nuclear accord between Iran and P5+1 can prompt “a big leap in economic and cultural relations between the two nations,” Araghchi said, and hoped that close relations between the two sides, which lost momentum because of the international sanctions, would be restored.

Renowned Iranian sculptor Ebrabim Eskandari who renovated the palm, supported by the Tehran Beautification Organization, said Tehran is a symbol of art and culture and should be introduced to the world by showcasing its artistic potentials.

He hoped Iran-Finland economic collaboration would be extended to cultural and artistic fields as well.

Eila Hiltunen’s aluminium brass palm is reminiscent of the Sibelius Monument - dedicated to Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (1865–1957) and located at Sibelius Park in Helsinki. It is also supported by three trunk-like tubes and one is able to walk into the space of the sculpture. The monument was sculpted by Hiltunen and unveiled in 1967. Originally it sparked a lively debate about the merits and flaws of abstract art.