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EghtesadOnline: As the current Iranian year is coming to an end on March 20, statistics on the country’s art market, namely the five major components—books, visual arts, cinema, theater and musical concerts—indicate growth in revenues.

Based on estimates, Iran’s art market revenues hit a record by earning 5 trillion rials ($111.73 million) this year, a report by Financial Tribune’s sister publication Donya-e-Eqtesad said.

The book market and cinema have had the biggest roles in the Iranian art market growth during the year.

Iranian book market has had huge sales growth that was mainly achieved during the 30th Tehran International Book Fair held on May 3-13, 2017. According to statistics released by the organizers of the event, the book fair earned 1.2 trillion rials ($26.81 million) in sales, a record on its own.

Going by the transactions made by POS or credit card machines, “we can say there was at least an 18% increase in sales. Yet, not all the transactions were cashless; many paid in cash”, Amir Masoud Shahramnia, the deputy head of TIBF, said at a press briefing on May 10 in the presence of the head of Tehran International Book Fair, Seyyed Abbas Salehi.

The book fair also saw a 10% increase in the number of visitors, judging by the sales of tickets at the ‘Shahr-e-Aftab’ subway station, the main access to the venue in south Tehran.

On the whole, book sales so far this year have amounted to 1.5 trillion rials ($33.74 million), up by 47.61% compared to last year (March 2016-17).

Iranian cinema sales have seen a noticeable rise during the past two years. Several movies beat records during the period. Based on estimates, movie sales have reached 1.79 trillion rials ($40 million) so far this year, while last year it grossed 1.57 trillion rials ($35.08 million), indicating a 14% rise year-over-year.

According to, the comedy film ‘The Whale 2: Roya’s Selection’ directed by Saman Moqaddam was the top grosser of this year, earning 209 billion rials ($4.68 million), followed by Saeed Soheili’s ‘Patrol 2’ with 197 billion rials ($4.42 million) and the social comedy ‘Wing Mirror’ directed by Manoucher Hadi with 190 billion rials ($4.24 million). 

Notably, the highest-grossing film of this year put last year’s top grossing film behind. Last year, Asghar Farhadi’s Academy-Award winning ‘The Salesman’ grossed 157 billion rials ($3.51 million).

Considering theater and musical performances, no reliable and comprehensive data have ever been published for this matter. However, there are noticeable examples this year in this market. 

Hossein Alizadeh’s ‘A Requiem for Fereidoun’ album grossed 1.9 billion rials ($42,458) within just two hours. The musical concert ‘C Project’ by Homayoun Shajarian and Sohrab Pournazeri set an all-time record in the history of musical concerts, selling close to 20 billion rials ($446,927). Also, the theatrical performance ‘The Confession’ directed by Shahab Hosseini earned 24 billion rials ($536,312). 

Visual arts market also lack reliable data on sales. There are no statistics on sales in this market. However, sales at Tehran Auction this year are said to have already broken last year’s record of 400 billion rials ($8.93 million). 

Donya-e-Eqtesad estimates that the total visual arts sales in the country amounted to 410 billion rials ($9.16 million), indicating a 7.89% rise YOY.


Iran art Iran Art Market