Parviz Tanavoli creates medallions full of symbolism to aid hospitals in Iran.

Parviz Tanavoli, renowned artist and the father of modern Iranian sculpture, has created a series of limited-edition medallions in order to raise funds for hospitals in his homeland during the global pandemic.


Stating that Iran has been “devastated” by the crisis, Tanavoli adds that US sanctions, as well as falling oil prices have further exacerbated the situation.


“I am extremely impressed by how Iranian healthcare workers are dealing with the Covid-19 crisis and what they are accomplishing with the bare minimum of equipment... I wanted to show my appreciation as an Iranian—not just as an artist,” explains Vancouver based Tanavoli.


The artist was inspired to create the medallions, which depict a nightingale singing on the palm of a hand, and a cypress tree on the reverse side, at the end of March. In Iranian folklore, the nightingale is an auspicious bird who is said to be the bearer of good news, while the cypress tree is a symbol of long life. Set against a background of hundreds of vertical lines representing the Iranian people, each medallion comes wrapped in turquoise ribbon representing healthy lungs.


The designs were sent to an expert craftsman in Tehran who produced the moulds and began casting a limited edition of 100 bronze and 20 silver medallions. Medallions can be ordered by emailing

June 22, 2020