Read how some of our former participants review their stay at the BERLIN ART INSTITUTE.

“BAI program is absolutely the best. Do work, get amazing crits, take time for serious discourse, have encounters and lectures/seminars with experienced and fascinating people from the art world. The studios are great, the concept of the program works, and above all, the leaders (Steffi & Ralf) know the entire artworld and continue to bring their personal energy as well as their endless connections to the art world into the program. I was there on and off for nearly a year. Hope to attend again. I’m not alone in my praise — this concept works.”

“I’m very happy to have past these few months at the Berlin Art Institute ! The studio spaces are great and allowed me to work in quite a big scale. Ralf and Stephanie guided me through my work process and were thoughtful mentors. Would love to come back !”

“For the second time I joined BAI this past autumn and for the second time I really enjoyed it. It’s an amazing space to share creativity and also meet amazing people from all over the world. Their approach to art is very contemporary and helps you develop a real artistic sense. Can’t wait to be back next year!”

“I had a great time discovering more about my artistic practice at BAI. Being in an environment that is full of different perspectives on creativity and is a supportive one really helped me become better and improve on my skills. Thanks so much Ralf and Stephanie for the supervision, I am looking forward to explore more of what I can do after my stay in BAI.”

“This experience changed me in so many ways! I am still processing it I met so many beautiful people and got to listen to different and interesting perspectives about art and life! I totally recommend it, no matter which moment of your career, age or place you came from!”

“Had really great time during my residency in BAI, enjoyed the program a lot, and especially the discussions and super friendly atmosphere! I discovered a lot new about my practice and knew more about art in Berlin. It was extremely useful experience for me. Many thanks to Ralf and Stephanie for guiding and conversations, and to all lectors and participants of the Block 10!”

“I enrolled to BAI in the search of a place that would give me the chance to free my artistic will. With no experience in art schools and never enough qualifications to apply in other art residencies/ art schools I found my chance at BAI. This place was my little heaven during my 4 month stay.

Ralf & Stephanie’s approach to art is broad, inclusive and passionate, and this is what makes BAI a great place to explore and free your artistic expression. Their guidance through the Berlin art scene is great and the school agenda with studio visits, seminars and lectures is excellent and diverse.

Although the seminars / workshops are not necessarily always related to your production or style, the chance to immerse yourself into different art productions will always enrich your knowledge or vision on art expression.  At BAI I also had the opportunity to connect with artists from all over the world with the most diverse experience and backgrounds.  Additionally, sharing studios with them gives you a unique experience where you can learn new techniques, get/give constructive observations or even get the chance to do collaborative work.

I totally recommend BAI and I also wish to go back soon! Thanks R&S for creating this space where there are no limits to create.”
“The focus on constructive and critical discourse, while still providing a studio space for individual practice, makes the BAI a unique and rare residency program. For me, it was the perfect mix between theory and practice. Moreover, the multidisciplinary model of the program organically facilitated intense open dialogues, small and large group discussions, experimentations, and collaborations (and late-night drinking sessions). On a more personal note, Ralf and Stephanie are personally invested in every participate. They generously put endless time into supporting, inspiring, mentoring, talking, laughing, and sharing with everyone involved. Oh, and the pasta salads are delectable! Thanks for hosting me!”
“My experience at the Bai was excellent. I felt totally supported, respected and at the same time with the freedom to continue with the development of my artistic process, thanks to the research of new materials and searches promoting self-confidence in my own artistic criteria and in the potential that one brings; without pressure and according to my needs. I consider that the BAI studio art program promotes a concrete opportunity for growth that, according to the way in which each participant takes advantage of it, can exceed their expectations not only as an artist, but also on a personal level. It is a platform stimulating, innovative and constructive, which promotes the development of the artistic language as well as self-confidence and the increase in one’s own talent and criteria. The coaching of their generous and well-prepared directors, as well as the interesting individual critical discussions they promote; as well as also in group, among the participating artists, exchanging and enriching with different ages and parts of cultural background that each one brings from their own countries is a clear demonstration of it; and it is a point that truly ‘adds up’ by the baggage that is shared, making people aware of seeing art from another perspectives.

In addition, the already planned visits to galleries and seminars given by talented thinkers, artists and / or curators invite to instruct the participants in knowledge, questions and conversations about contemporary art as well as to know how to insert themselves in it professionally. This also gave me the opportunity to explore the cultural richness, the idiosyncrasy and the art world that unfolds in the incredible and now beloved city of Berlin.
I would also like to highlight the loving disposition and task of its directors, the artists Stephanie Jünemann and Ralf Schmitt, virtuous human beings who give themselves to the participants in a interested and careful way, generating each one to carry out their own process, guiding from a non-pretentious place or higher; and with enough love to stimulate everyone in their own aspirations. I hope to come back, because I feel that thanks to this institution I was able at a particular moment in my life to rediscover part of my paternal roots in this beloved European land and thus realize an important and unforgettable internal process that transcended even my own art.”

“I came to BAI in September 2017 without very much knowledge about what the institute would offer, how I would work or what skills I would leave with upon completion of my stay. My main goal was to leave after three months of the Portfolio Program with an answer to the question of if I wanted to pursue Fine Art as my career. Six months later I’m leaving BAI feeling more fulfilled and inspired than I thought I would – it has exceeded my expectations.

The directors Ralf and Stephanie are excellent mentors in the sense that they have a wealth of knowledge about the art world from business, creative and social perspectives, but they allow you to absorb and enquire at your own pace. The program is structured in such a way that participants must be self-motivated and decide how much or little they want to achieve during their stay, but stimulating discourse, advice and collaborative growth are available at all times from Ralph, Stephanie and the other participants. The atmosphere of the studio, especially if it is a reasonably full block of study, is energetic and motivating. Berlin has a wealth of art events and spaces to explore and the Program encourages participants to expand their artistic practice beyond the studio (sometimes it’s hard to leave… you may get lost in the studio painting, chatting to your mates and living off pretzels from the bakery next door).

If you enroll in the Portfolio Program there is ample opportunity to discuss your work and plenty of constructive critique on what artistic path may be the best for you, how to compile your portfolio and what to include to make you a serious candidate when applying to schools.

If you’re looking for a lot of workshops or intensive teaching, this may not be so much for you – there are stimulating guest lectures, seminars or workshops each week, but this is not an instructive school. It is very self-motivated and more about allowing you to learn about your own art practice and giving you the space and discourse to do so.

Overall I would highly recommend the institute. Many people come for a one-month stay, to experiment in a new setting and be inspired by the art scene in Berlin. I would recommend staying a little longer – the participants are very international and so transient that sometimes it feels as though a month passes in a rush of new faces only to be replaced the next month. Stay a while and you will experience the full value of the creative environment.

Many thanks to Ralf and Stephanie for their positive energy and commitment!”

“Taking up residence at BAI was a very enriching experience. Being immersed in a large and delicious atelier made me create and be willing to step out of my comfort zone. All the accompaniments, conversations, talks, workshops and visits were extremely important to generate confidence in my personal work and in depth. Great thanks, Ralf and Stephanie, for the care in each participante, the struture of the institute and the rich and diverse schedule. Every day was so especial.”
“The Berlin Art Institute provides a space unlike any other I have worked in. The environment is extremely inviting, and welcomes creativity and experimentation to its core. During my time at BAI, I embraced this idea and discovered some wonderful ideas that I have brought home with me. Stephanie and Ralf provide participants with interesting visits, and invite knowledgable guests to further instruct participants in contemporary questions and conversations. The only thing I want is to be able to stay longer! I will always think of my time at the Berlin Art Institute fondly..”
“I am Magdalena, 21 years old, and just finished the Bachelor on Visual Arts in Argentina. I’ve wanted to spend the summer learning and working in my art so I decided to look a residence to do abroad. I had heard the best references of art in Berlin so I started looking for options in there. When I read the program of the BAI I really liked it and I wasn’t wrong about it. I arrived Berlin on the 29th of December of 2017 expending to start the Program on the second of January. The Program started and each day was better than the one before.

At the BAI I was pushed to rethink and rethink about what I was doing, why I was doing it, everything was questioned and I think that is very important while doing art so that you don’t finish producing to produce and that’s it. The proposals or the comments they’ve done about my work where always constructive, and I left Berlin with lots of ideas and concerns.

I think the program has a great combination between the advantage of having a working space for your own where you can manage your own times, go wherever you want and have a lot of time to produce and the “lectures” and talks with Stephanie and Ralf. Listening to others talk about what they do and also sharing what I was trying to say with my work was the other essential part of the program for me.

The other great part of the Program is the contact with lots of contemporary artist form there, how they work, what they are doing, visits to galleries and what’s really good is that they are very variated so that you can get to now lots of different ways of doing art nowadays.

I finished the stay at Berlin having learned so many things, I’ve got to know lots of people for all over the world, with different cultures, different ways of living than mine, and of course an enormous range of different pieces of works which was very very enriching for me.”

“My first trip to Berlin as an artist after I graduated in Mumbai, India as a sculptor finally happened in September 2017. As anticipated the art scene of berlin was too vast. My residency at Berlin art institute was my sole window to see the art market in Berlin City. My wish was to grasp as much as I could in the period of my 60 days in Berlin.

From the first day of my program in BAI, I believe I never stopped learning. From being very sceptical to believing in the sincerity of ones conduct was the biggest lesson I learnt.

The program and the institute is well designed by Ralf and Stephanie to make one aware about the world outside as well as from inside. The lectures and the guests invited at BAI was one of the best moments. It personally helped me to be vocal about my choices, interaction and my technics. Ralf and Stephanie’s participation in the interest of each participant was phenomenally encouraging. Most of all the besides the exposure to the new culture and the art scene, the institute makes you an independent being able to see a perspective of your own.

I thank Ralph and Stephanie for their contribution, honesty and moral support at every step. Hoping to see them again this summer.”

“I spent eight weeks at BAI, from the end of March until the end of May 2017. The time flew by, and I couldn’t have enjoyed it more. The structure of the programme strikes the perfect balance between intensive discussion and seminars, and allowing you the time to fully immerse yourself in both your work and the incredibly opportunities that Berlin has to offer.

Our meetings every morning were always filled with fascinating conversations on everything and anything – as well as a fresh pot of coffee or tea! The visitors we had, ranging from artists to curators to people running galleries and project spaces, were always ready to fully engage with us, and being able to discuss our work with them was a great opportunity. Our frequent trips to different project spaces and galleries were also fantastic – being able to meet with the artists showing and the curators of the spaces offered us great insights to the work presented.

The Spring Academy, which was week 1 of my second block, was a very intensive week, with different speakers every day and ending with an evening trip to the Berlin Art Weekend. Again, the artists, curators and others who came to speak to us were fantastic, giving very interesting talks on the theme – Art In Public Space – and speaking to us about our own work, and the visit to various exhibitions was interesting and a lot of fun!

Ralf and Stephanie, as well as the visitors who spoke or ran workshops, were always full of suggestions of where to go and what to see, and really helped me to make the most of staying in a city as wonderful as Berlin. My fellow participants were a diverse, fantastic group of people – all of us at different moments on our artistic journeys, but all equals and all supporting one another. Due to the supportive, positive atmosphere, and the fascinating discussions we enjoyed, during my time at BAI my work grew and changed in very positive ways. I am now studying a Masters in Fine Art at Northumbria University, and my time at BAI helped me to get to where I am now. It’s something I’ll always remember, and I can’t wait to go back!”

“I started my time at BAI with only one month booked and ended up staying for four. The space is something I probably won’t be able to have again for years and I can say with no doubt it was the most I have learned in any school or art university so far.

In the first month I didn’t use my studio space so much: I was busy going to all of the lectures and seminars…. It’s hard to keep up with all the references ! Ralf and Steph know so much about what’s on or what’s relevant to what’s just been said and so do the people you are working alongside. Because of this you tend to leave BAI with pages of things to research, remember or go and see and of course it’s not always possible to do all of it… but its a super exciting way to get to know a city.

Because there are new people coming in every week to talk to you about their work you never know what to expect… Apart from coffee which there is always lots of. Because the group is small it’s very intimate especially for the seminars, where you have 3 days in a row with one artist. I really don’t think it’s like anything else, some in particular have stuck with me. It is also a rare situation when the visitors review your work because they may never see you again, which brings an honesty. Of course some criticism you chose to ignore but it was so helpful for me to have this instead of it being tiptoed round like I have often found before with art. Small bits of important advice like how to deal with form and content which completely changed how I have been working ever since.

Once I started working I found myself in the studio all of the time… Often with a few projects on the go and the remaining the months went way too quickly! Ralf and Steph took so much time to help me with my portfolio.. They came in on extra days to look at it; with them I took it apart, re-ordered it, titled it. Steph sat on the floor with me one afternoon helping me measure paintings I had to mount, leaning on the ruler so I could try and cut in straight lines.

I cannot thank them enough for the 4 months I spent at BAI !! I miss it a lot and when I go back to Berlin I will absolutely definitely visit. I got an offer from my top choice, the Gerrit Reitveld Acadamie in Amsterdam where I will start in August and I have no doubt I wouldn’t have got it without my time spent in Berlin. Thank you, thank you, thank you!.”

“I stayed for a month at BAI from April to May in 2017. It was my first time in Berlin and I am more than happy that I chose to spend it with Ralf, Stephanie and the other participants in the studio program.Ralf and Stephanie are both great artists, helpful mentors and warm humans. Throughout the month they organized artists talks, studio and gallery visits, on top of numerous group and individual critiques. They, along with some visiting artists, have provided informative and constructive feedbacks to my projects and helped me develop my concepts further. They are also extremely friendly and simply enjoyable to talk to.

The fellow participants in the studio program are equally amazing. My group back in 2017 was a truly international mix. We were about 10 people from at least 6 different countries. Though we were from different parts of the world, art, Berlin and BAI bounded us together. We supported our peers’ work, gave others our honest feedbacks, and some of us even collaborated on projects. It was extremely delightful to be surrounded by like-minded, brilliant young artists from various art practices and cultural backgrounds. Together we made art and also had a lot of fun.

One of the highlights during my month of stay was when all the participants went out and helped artist duo Various & Gould with their public art project “City Skins”. We went to the Marx-Engels Forum for a day and worked with Various & Gould to apply paper onto the iconic Marx and Engels sculpture. The end goal was to peel off the paper and make a duplicate of the sculpture with paper. It was a fulfilling day for us and an exclusive way for a first-time Berlin visitor to experience the city.

The time at BAI was refreshing for me. There I adopted a completely different approach to making art. Usually I would plan my project first and carry out the plan step by step. At BAI, I learnt to let go of my control a little and be inspired by the world around me. The project I did there was a fun, weird and ambiguous video featuring a toy steamboat I found at one of Berlin’s many flea markets. It is a special project for me that will always remind me of the wonderful time I spent at BAI and the vibrant city of Berlin.”

“When I first arrived at the Berlin Art Institute I wasn’t confident in my abilities as an artist. My main objective was to build a portfolio fit for different art universities in Europe with the focus of Graphic Design. Caught between wanting to let loose and paint on a large scale and also trying to have the organisation and discipline of a designer, I was pretty much lost in concepts I knew did not maximise my full potential. Through the months I spent at the BAI, Stephanie and Ralf helped me clarify what I really wanted and what my strong points were. When I needed guidance on a project or just to talk about future courses, they were both there at any time pointing me in the right direction.

The weekly gallery visits and Artist talks put me in touch with different works and creators from around the world and gave me an insight into the art world of Berlin which helped to solidify my thoughts on my own style and how to build on the concepts I was just touching on.

With the 24 Hour access to the studios I was able to work on my own terms and on a time frame that suited my needs. The international element of the programme was and incredible experience and gave me the chance to interact and collaborate with artists from every corner of the globe. Many of which will remain close friends for years to come, creating a firm networking opportunity.

I have now been accepted into my first choice course at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands with the help of Stephanie and Ralf and all the support I received at the BAI.”

“When I finished high school I ambitioned to begin my Fine Art studies in Germany and precisely because of this big desire I decided to attend the BAI for a period of 6 months.

While I was there I developed various portfolios for my applications and now, after what I consider a very short period of time, I am now part of the Freie Kunst program in the Art Academy of Düsseldorf.

The BAI provided the fertile atmosphere for me to develop my art practice. It was a platform that allowed myself to flourish individually, digging deeper into my own interests while promoting self-reflection thanks to the flexibility and freedom of the program, in addition to the open-minded attitude of Ralf and Steffi. They both understand the importance of discussing the artistic work – their constructive critiques and feedback is something that I definitely appreciated.

Being in the program, I got a small insight into the Berlin art world and was introduced to other interesting practicing artists during the seminars and talks. Being exposed to these factors, that aren’t always of easy access, was extremely stimulating.

All this pushed me to experiment and find out plenty of different creative possibilities while sharing amazing experiences and cooperating together with other artists attending the program. It was fun and productive times where I developed what I think as a strong, consistent portfolio.

The BAI was a good, enriching and very motivating starting point that helped me get one step closer to my future ambitions. Warm greetings to Ralf & Steffi and a sentimental thought to the amazing workplace that I was provided with.”

“I had the most amazing experience at the BAI. The first thing that caught my attention was the institute itself- it is a zygote of anti-establishment, the fact that the founders are so open to inviting different types of artists from all over the world is radical in itself- it’s not elitist or stuck up, it feels grass roots but is located in an incredible industrial building surrounded by mechanics and industrial businesses, which is so useful when sourcing material! The studio was one of the best I’d ever had- huge, white and plenty of natural light. Ralf and Steffi were amazing at giving a real insight into the art world , connecting the participants with gallerists and artists in Berlin. This would never happen in London I can tell you that. Their ethos is free, they see beauty in all its forms, they encourage you to experiment and explore new ways of making. Our first project was public art – putting art into the world and public realm. This was a huge game changer for me. For once I felt really in tune with my own creativity, and I really questioned what art is to the ordinary man. I met some amazing artists sharing a studio which opened up space for collaboration and a lot of fun! Group discussions , seminars and private gallery visits were excellent- you have ample chance to discuss, speak your mind and debate with professionals , and most importantly your peers, new friends that you will probably always have in your new future.

I am so grateful to have been nurtured under the BAI, and now a few months later I really feel that I am reaping the rewards of my time in Berlin and under the guidance of Ralf and Steffi. My creativity and flourished and the BAI gave me the necessary in put to develop. It’s a rare and special place, and for those that are able to see and understand that will really come out a much stronger individual.”

“100% the perfect art place, it’s a great environment so you can see and interact with another artists from different background and the most important thing the BAI team is very very helpful and supportive & great mentors. I really liked the program and highly recommend it as I will repeat it again.”

“I’ve just finished my one month stay at BAI, and I’m really satisfied with how the school works. The experience was rich and well articulated, I had the possibility to listen and interact with experienced artists, curators and gallerists. The directors of BAI, Stephanie and Ralf, are just amazing, they put a lot of attention on everybody’s needs and they give suggestions to help you grown as an artist. I totally recommend this school where you can have dialogues with interesting people and time for experimentation. The school also give you the tools to understand and learn more about Berlin’s art scene.”

“An outstanding creative institute and one I cannot reccomend highly enough. I spent four months at the BAI and it was a real highlight in my career as a professional artist. Engaging, relevent, both personal and professional, incredible access to Berlin art scene that wouldn’t be possible anywhere else, fantastic guest lecturers and feedback, amazing facilities…life changing and life affirming. Thank you so much”

“This was my first artistic residency, and has left me hungry for more! My time at BAI was invaluable in so many ways. The space that Stephanie and Ralf have created brings together a rich variety of people from different backgrounds all eager to share and explore their artistic practice. The program was the perfect balance of free studio time and theory. This allowed me to maintain my level of motivation and inspiration throughout whilst focusing on my goal. I was grateful for the numerous opportunities we had to explore the art scene in Berlin by directly interacting with artists, galleries and project spaces. I received feedback and guidance from my fellow studio partners, the program directors and the guest artist which allowed for a very dynamic and varied critique to my work. The studio spaces in themselves are set in a beautiful calm area in Berlin. Each participant is provided with plenty of space in a shared studio room. I personally really valued sharing the space with so many artists as I was constantly learning new techniques and approaches resulting in a constant flow of inspiration. As I was there in the summer, the location was perfect as I got to cool off in the lake not far from the studio on hot summer days! Overall, this art residency definitely highlighted the importance of art in my life, and I am so excited to continue my exploration and hopefully return to BAI sometime soon! Thanks again for this wonderful experience, Zalfa”

“After graduating with a bachelors in Fine Art in the United States, I planned to move abroad for some time to engage in different discourse and perspective in the art world. I found the Berlin Art Institute rather serendipitously, which was a perfect segue to jumpstart my practice abroad. It greatly helped me integrate my process in a new city with enough structure to guide and push me, but enough freedom to allow me to self-organize. With the extensive knowledge and support of Ralf and Stephanie, I was able to delve into the Berlin art scene and community right off the bat. Both Ralf and Stephanie are well-versed and involved in artistic happenings around Berlin, as both are artists themselves, and are fantastic mentors for emerging artists trying to make it in this city or anywhere globally. With dialogue across disciplines and input from various visiting artists via lectures and seminars, as well as gallery and studio visits, there was always plenty of stimuli. Participants hail from all across the globe, coming from very different backgrounds and points of their careers, so discussion is rich and valuable in countless ways. The program is kept rather small— under 20 participants at a time— making it easy to connect with other individuals and get to know their work well enough to offer critique. Ralf and Stephanie carefully observe each participant’s practice and offer insight to aid artistic progression. The block structure offers variation, as each month a few participants leave and a few new arrive, which makes the program dynamic. BAI offers a wonderful opportunity for creatives anywhere to transplant to Berlin for some period and push their practice.”

“I went to BAI to expand and develop my artistic practice, produce new visual work and learn in a new environment. I’m a London based writer who also makes visual art inspired by the written word. I was also in the process of curating a group art exhibition with 14 artists from across the UK. It’s my first time curating and I had a steep learning curve.   During the month at BAI I had the opportunity to learn directly from other curators, on visits to their shows and to benefit from the expert feedback from Stephanie, Ralf and other artist tutors. I got a clear window into the different options for my own art and for the future potential of my curated projects. The programme is an exciting opportunity to experience the studio space and to work with an international group. I had a super collaborative and stimulating month, it’s rare to get such concentrated and high quality learning. When I arrived I had no set idea of what artwork I might produce but found it so productive. Highly recommended and I’d love to go back.”

“The best experience of an artistic residency!! The lectures, seminars, the studios are amazing! It’s a co-working team between the artists and the directors that are also artists with a lot of experience and objective feedback to the works and the process of each participant! Really I highly recommend this residency, I did 12 blocks and I can say that the art that I produce now it’s strong and with a lot of knowledge inside. It’s a cost benefit, you connect with galleries, independent spaces, people, exhibitions, it’s a whole program created for artists who really want to improve skills with practice and theory. Thank youuu!!!”

“After extensive research, knowing I wanted to be in Berlin, I decided on attending the 4 week block studio practice programme. I wish I could have stayed longer! The impact of the BAI experience has been profound. The environment of discourse, experimentation and freedom to explore, allowed me to focus on the objectives I had set: the accumulation of information regarding the Berlin Art scene, contemporary and historical and an objective discourse on my new body of work.

Ralf and Stephanie have a wealth of knowledge that they share freely and openly. They follow your lead and tailor their input to your expressed needs. They make you feel comfortable in the new environment and free to express yourself within a discursive and experiential space. There are no boundaries. Lectures, studio visits, guest seminars and informative workshops added valuable knowledge to the experience. I returned to Cape Town empowered and invigorated by the dynamic energy of both Ralf and Stephanie and the participants.”

“I booked the studio programme at BAI with the intention of putting together a Graphic Design portfolio. I had no idea what to expect and it is safe to say that the programme exceeded my expectations in every way. Not only did Stephanie and Ralf provide me with ongoing support, but the perfect balance between autonomous work and organised seminars, lectures and visits, inspired me to create work that I otherwise would not have produced.

The fact that we had the opportunity to discuss our work with artists coming from different fields was very enriching and was essential for me to progress in my art. The talks with other participants were equally as inspiring and by interacting with them and their skills, I was able to learn new techniques, such as screen printing and acrylic pouring.

The studios are based in a charming industrial area and are spacious, well-lit and perfect for documentation (I should know). The fact that I shared the studio with 4 other participants made it feel even more like home and it quickly became my favourite place to spend time in. I spent a total of 2 ½ months at the institute, during which I met amazing artists and people, leaving me with a load of works, I can now thankfully call my portfolio.”

“The environment at BAI allows you to get fully immersed in art, meaning that you have the opportunity to get in contact with artists from different worlds and learn from each other in every interaction you have such as studio and gallery visits, seminars, talks, etc.

You are able to establish a relationship with peers sharing a space that encourages you to exchange ideas and, most possibly, come up with new ones for future projects. Ralf and Stephanie are very helpful and always willing to assist or guide you in any way they can.”

“My monthly residence in Berlin Art Institute was a great time of intensive self-development. I have spent there my time on creating and conversations with artists, who were willingly sharing their own experiences and conclusions. I really appreciate their engagement and openness. During my stay I could work on my documentation and website under the supervision of professionals. Personally, the most important and valuable element for me were the conversations about art. It was very interesting to observe other participants’s work during the progress and to discuss it together. I really enjoyed exchanging ideas and experiences with artists form different countries.

The studios of BAI are located in very inspiring post-industrial buildings. The spaciousness , bright rooms, shared for 3-4 artists were an ideal space to create and communicate. I enjoyed participating in a wide range of lectures and visits, which gave me the opportunity to explore the wealth of culture and art of Berlin. During my stay in BAI I saw my own work anew, from a different perspective. My experience in BAI gave me the energy and new ideas on how to continue my artistic path. I feel that the artists I met in BAI gave me a lot of motivation to develop my practice. I returned with new plans and a new strategy. Many thanks for Stephanie and Ralf, who are fully engaged, enthusiastic and professional in each aspect. I appreciate their work and also the atmosphere they have created . BAI is the place for dynamic growth for artists in different stages and interests.”

“On August 6th 2017, I flew from Barcelona to Berlin expecting to find a place for myself in this crazy city and to discover something I was seeking for, not really knowing what it was. I immediately fell for Berlin. I fell for its never-ending shady parks, its cold silver lakes and naked swimmers, the trashy night clubs, majestic museums and abandoned but dignified buildings. I fell for its vibrating hidden energy and for its electrifying non-stopping life. I wanted to absorb all of it, to merge into it. And nothing of all of it would have been possible without BAI.

I enrolled at the Berlin Art Institute without really knowing what to expect. I knew that I wanted a place which would allow me to express myself, somewhere where I could make art, in a city that inspires and arouses all your passions and ideas. At BAI, I found what I needed at this time of my life. Not only did I meet incredible artists from all over the world, some of which have become really good friends, but I also learnt about all kinds of art and art works; I visited exhibitions I could never have heard of; and for the first time, I was able to figure out what I wanted to do and I learned to be able to show my work to other artists, talk about it and listen to the really interesting feedback.

The Berlin Art Institute is a paradise for artists. I had never been at a place like this, with its large factory chimneys, the wide windows and white walls waiting to be covered by new pieces. I enjoyed nights of crazy painting and mornings of never-ending coffee at the studio. Being there makes you want to work all the time, always with the good advice of Ralf and Stephanie and other fellow artists and seminar visitants, as a source of constant inspiration. I had to leave BAI three months ago, but I already miss it like crazy and I am looking for the opportunity to come back to it. I hope it’ll be really soon.”

“I remember being hesitant whether it is worth the money to travel from New York to Berlin for a month in order to participate in the Berlin Art Institute Studio Program. Exactly half a year later, I was packing art supplies and booking an Airbnb for my journey. August 14th I landed in Berlin. I could not tell whether I was jet lagged, tired, or simply excited, but it stood out to me that I did not feel in the first, second or all other days that I am somewhere abroad. I felt just right as if I am in the place where I belonged.

I have the most positive impressions of the studio program which nurtured me for one month and one week, allowing me to grow as an artist naturally, thoughtfully. I cannot see how any other experience could have been any more perfect for where I stand with my work and where I stand in life today than this program.

The multiple presentations and critiques each week, the visiting artists, curators, gallery directors that I got to speak to about my work, the studio facilities, the location, group trips, the city culture, the locals, the fellow participating artists that have come from around the world, and of course the knowledgeable, experienced directors Stephanie and Ralf all came together in gently moving me along my own path, providing the guidance I thirsted for, for years. I am excited to keep working in the direction I began to explore, which has been waiting for me for so long. I would like to thank everyone in the program again for helping this experience happen. I am excited for collaborative work with the artists I got to meet at the program.”

“My time at the BAI was an essential part of my growth as an artist. Working among artists at varying stages in their career was a valuable learning experience and helped me to frame my own practice in a wider context. The studios themselves are beautiful, the other inhabitants of the building are insightful and the life in the city essential. I believe that without my time here, I would be a different artist today.

I’d like to use this opportunity to say a special thanks to Ralf and Stephanie, who have continued to maintain contact with me since my residency in 2016 – forwarding opportunities and maintaining a vested interest in my development. They always keep an open door for an alumni, I look forward to returning and seeing how the program has developed in the near future.”

“For me, BAI was a truly unique opportunity to experiment and explore my interest in arts further while building a stronger body of work for a portfolio. Attending the studio program helped me gain more confidence and a deeper insight to my work and the process behind it.

The concept itself is quite interesting as it brings together a diverse group of people from different backgrounds. Participants are met as equals and they are all brought to work together rather than arranging them in groups based on skill or experience. In the end it’s this way of thinking that sets Stephanie and Ralf apart from many others and makes BAI special. I was able to learn a lot just by observing, discussing and sharing ideas with the others.

Most of all, Stephanie and Ralf put a lot of effort on planning each block to best suit the needs of the participants. I’m grateful for their kindness and support and glad to share the news that I’ve now been accepted without conditions to the 1st bachelor Basicyear of the four year full-time Bachelor’s degree programme Art & Design of the Gerrit Rietveld Academie.”

“After travelling to Berlin in 2016 to visit some artist colleagues of mine, I decided to return the following year for a longer period to do some research and to develop some new aspects of my practice. While scoping out the residencies available in Berlin, the BAI really stood out with it’s program of seminars, artist talks and gallery visits. Lead by Ralf and Stephanie, who are themselves an amazing source of arts knowledge and wisdom, the program opened up new pathways of thinking through the discourse with the visiting artists and trips to galleries and studios. The ability to discuss aspects of arts practice with artist at varied stages of their careers was invaluable, and the intimate number of attendees to the BAI really made the time very special!

I left the BAI with an abundance of work, both developmental and finalised, and some great ideas to move forward with. I was really pleased with the outcome, and would highly recommend a stint at the Berlin Art Institute to any stage artist.”

“I think we are all looking for time and space, time to reflect on ourselves and understand what surrounds us; but for an artist these two notions are even more valuable. Without this space for the mind and for expression, the thoughts only float without ever clinging. When I came across the program of the Berlin Art Institute, I was very impressed by the importance given to exchanges between artists, mentors and founders.

Conversation is at the heart of the BAI philosophy, a conversation to learn, think and express. The rhythm is intense I would not hide it from you, but it is with this exercise that we are urged to extract the essence of our thoughts and our Art. I would liken my three months in BAI like three months of immersion in an artist accelerator. To be immersed in such an international group, with such different cultures and experiences is an extraordinary opportunity, not to mention the exceptional quality of the speakers who openly share their successes and failures.

I would also point out that such an environment would not work as well if the atmopshere was not the bienvaillance. Ralf and Stephanie opened their arms to help shape us.”

“After graduating from a Bachelor of Fine Arts program, I was in search of a residency that would allow me to develop my practice in my own time. BAI was instrumental in doing so because the Studio Programme offered me the flexibility, freedom and space to investigate where I wanted to take my artistic practice next. Ralf and Stephanie share a vast knowledge of the art world, and are passionate to help you propel your practice. They spend one on one time with participants to help them grow, and provide constructive criticism that is useful in giving them new ideas and direction to apply to their work.

The program offers a diverse array of lectures, studio visits, and tours that expose participants to the vibrant art community in Berlin. Also this introduces participants to a range of driven professionals, which creates an opportunity for them to experience their diverse practices. The international presence of the program was a great quality as well because it enabled me to connect with inspiring artists from many countries, and build relationships that can lead to future collaborations. In the end, I found the Studio Programme quite successful in helping me give new direction to my practice. The program helped me explore ideas to implement into my future work, and allowed me to expand on my capabilities as an artist.”

“Looking to change careers and making a return to formal education I chose to attend the studio programme at the BAI. The flexibility of the programme as well as the ethos was the initial attraction being unable to find anything similar in the UK. I wasn’t disappointed. My time there was instrumental in allowing me to develop a portfolio and secure a place at Chelsea College of Arts on the Grad. Dip fine art programme.

The studio programme at the BAI gave me the space and freedom to explore my artistic practice. With 24 hour access to studios I was able to create a schedule that worked for me rather than the other way around, this I found really conducive to my learning experience and creative production.

The international element of the programme creates a diverse and stimulating cohort. I have met people that have become firm friends and future collaborators. One of the most beneficial parts of the programme I found to be was the quality one-on-one time and access to a variety of creative practitioners. This was an invaluable experience and a wonderful opportunity to create networks outside of the BAI and form nurturing relationships beyond the programme. This something that I can look back on now that I am in formal art education in the UK and really appreciate.

What makes the BAI truly special though are Stephanie and Ralf. Inspiring, nurturing, supportive and engaging artists and educators. They really held my hand whilst I was learning to walk and my experience learning with them has had a monumental transformative impact on my practice. Giving me the much needed confidence to apply myself wholeheartedly to my future ambitions. Thank you BAI.”

“During my stay at the BAI, I have experienced a worthwhile aspect of artist interaction and guidance from the team, staff, visiting lecturers and fellow artists. I was grateful for the availability of space and time to further explore my art and really question and analyze it. Sharing the studio with other artists was so fruitful on the artistic and personal level. The staff and owners were extremely helpful and always paved the way for us to have more art explorations and discussions. Field visits played a great role too in visualising Berlin art scene and community. The oportunity to be introduced to a new open and diverse part of the world as well as new friends and artists, was such a privilege.“

The team of the BERLIN ART INSTITUTE says bye-bai to all fellows!