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Independent, non-governmental networks play a key role within European and international cultural cooperation as well as for the support and protection of artists’ rights and demands. In the following some networks are presented that are of interest for visual artists and that differ widely as regards aims, focuses and size.
National cultural organisations and programmes often focus on national interests or the promotion of arts abroad. In recent years trans-national organisations have emerged that do support European, bilateral or multilateral cooperation processes. These organisations differ widely in their focus, aims, procedures and legal structures. Some are operational and develop own programmes, while others offer grants to individuals, organisations or projects.
In the following a selection of programmes is listed that are open for applications also for artists in Germany:
The European Union also supports cultural and creative projects that promote Europe’s cultural heritage, cultural diversity and cross-border cooperation through the Creative Europe program (running from 2021 to 2027).
The programme consists of two sub-programmes: the CULTURE sub-programme, and the MEDIA sub-programme to support the audiovisual sector. In addition, there is the overarching funding area CROSS SECTOR.
The Creative Europe budget for the new funding period totals 2.44 billion euros, almost one billion euros more than its predecessor. The Creative Europe CULTURE subprogram accounts for 804 million euros.
The main measures of the CULTURE subprogram include funding for European cooperation projects, networks and platforms.
As a general rule, cooperation projects must have a particular relevance at the European level; bilateral or regional projects are not funded. In the sense of intensive, cross-border European cooperation, several project partners must always be involved in the conception and organization of a project.
In the area of funding for cooperation projects, applications can be submitted in three categories:
Eligible organizations must meet certain legal criteria and be based in an eligible country. Individuals are not eligible to submit applications. The project partner consortium consists of an applicant organization, the project coordinator, and other cultural institutions acting as partners.
The Creative Europe programme is managed by the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency, supervised by the Directorate General Education and Culture. The formal examination of the applications is carried out by the EACEA, the evaluation of the content by a European jury of experts.
CulturEU - interactive guide mapping funding opportunities for the cultural and creative sector
In November 2021, the EU Commission launched CulturEU, a new interactive guide mapping funding opportunities available at EU level for the cultural and creative sectors.
CulturEU will be regularly updated with the most recent information on new calls coming out, and will be available in all EU languages in early 2022.
Creative Europe Desk
We recommend getting in touch with the Creative Europe Desk in Bonn before submitting an application. Here project proposals and submissions are carefully checked and advice and technical assistance is given as regards formalities and plausibility. The CED in Bonn is the national contact point for the EU’s cultural funding.
It informs on the cultural support of the EU, particularly on the Creative Europe programme, and other European supporting possibilities. Detailed information is available at the webpage, also advice on individual questions is provided by telephone or email. The CED regularly hosts information seminars on EU cultural support.
CEDs operate in all countries participating in the EU Creative Europe programme, at the moment 40.
Webpage Europa fördert Kultur
The webpage Europa fördert Kultur, a joint project of the Creative Europe Desk KULTUR Germany and the Creative Europe Desk Austria, offers detailed information on the programme Creative Europe as well as on further EU supporting programmes that are relevant for cultural activities. The publisher and project sponsor of the page is the Kulturpolitische Gesellschaft.
The site provides detailed information about EU funding programs that are relevant for cultural projects in addition to the Creative Europe program. The so-called structural funds play an important role here. Especially in the promotion of regional development through the European Structural Funds for Regional Development (ERDF), culture has played an increasingly important role in recent years (see also the explanatory article by Sylvia Amann on the IGBK project "Übergänge/ Nachbarschaft", PDF from 2019 in German).
Culture Moves Europe
Following the successful i-Portunus pilot phase, the programme offers people from every Creative Europe member countries (current status as of May 2022) the the opportunity to apply for individual mobility or residency grants.
The programme runs until 2025 and includes the following sectors: architecture, cultural heritage, design and fashion design, literary translation, music, performing arts and visual arts.
Since many years, the Internationale Gesellschaft der Bildenden Künste (IGBK) issues the IAA International Identity Card for professional visual artists (residing in Germany).
It includes ticket price reductions or free admission to many art museums and numerous galleries - in Germany as well as worldwide.
All organized and non-organized visual artists (no students) can apply for the IAA card. The card is valid for two years. The International Identity Card for Professional Artists of IAA does not constitute an individual membership in the IAA or in the IGBK.
Alternatively, you can also apply for the IAA card by postal mail. Our address: IGBK, Taubenstraße 1, 10117 Berlin.
Please don't send us applications by email. Thank you!
Any questions? Call us at: +49 (0)30 23 45 76 66
We need the following information for your application:
or alternative to that
Furthermore we need
After checking your request briefly, we will send you our bank details for wiring the administrative charge for the card, which is regularly 35,- € for professional visual artists or respectively 10,- € at a reduced rate for members of IGBK member-associations (see above).
We will send you the card by postal mail, once payment has been received. You will receive your invoice per Email with our shipping note. The whole process usually takes about two weeks.
The information portal www.touring-artists.info provides artists for both the performing and the visual arts comprehensive information on visas and residence, transport and customs, taxes, social and other insurances, and copyright related to cross-border mobility.
The website and service is addressed to artists living in Germany and working abroad for a limited time, as well as to foreign artists who come to work in Germany temporarily.
International Artists Info Berlin
From September 2018 on the service also welcomes artists and culture professionals who were forced to leave their home countries and are now residing in Germany. Individual consultations on international projects as well as on questions on how to achieve a future career in Germany are offered. Culture professionals can also obtain information on the Berlin job market in particular. Moreover, the helpdesk service addresses cultural institutions in Berlin that are collaborating with arriving artists.
The information portal has been enhanced accordingly with corresponding information in German, English and Arabic.
This extension of touring artists is part of the project International Artist Information Berlin.
touring artists is a joint project of IGBK, the International Theatre Institute (ITI) Germany and Dachverband Tanz Deutschland (DTD). The touring artists helpdesk is a cooperation of IGBK, ITI and DTD together with SMartDe - Netzwerk für Kreative e.V.. The project is supported by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.
The enhanced service for artists and culture professionals from countries affected by crisis is part of the project "International Artists Info Berlin" – a cooperation of IGBK, ITI and DTD with SMartDe – Netzwerk für Kreative e.V., supported by the Senate Department for Culture and Europe Berlin, programme ‘Weltoffenes Berlin‘.