The promotion of artistic production and reception is achieved on the one hand by funding the cultural institutions and on the other hand by creating art-friendly conditions. This also includes the provision of basic and advanced artistic training, primarily through 52 music, theatre and art colleges and four federal academies.
The Federal Government’s cultural funding focuses on the following areas of responsibility: national, establishing a regulatory framework for the development of art and culture, funding cultural institutions of national interest (e.g. the National Library, the Federal Archives, the Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany) and projects, preserving and protecting cultural heritage, cultural foreign policy (e.g. Deutsche Welle), fostering historical awareness and promoting Berlin as a capital city (Capital City Funding Agreement).
The area of focus at federal level include cultural integration, protection of cultural assets, the return of Nazi looted art and looted art, the cultural and creative industries, provenance research, reappraisal of the Nazi regime of terror and the SED dictatorship, art in exile, digitalisation of culture and media and currently also the Bauhaus, the Humboldt Forum opening in 2020 and the Beethoven Jubilee 2020.
Other central funding instruments of the federal, state and local governments include specific programmes – in accordance with their responsibilities. Examples of programmes at federal level are: Nationally valuable cultural monuments (since 1950, until 2017 670 cultural monuments with a total volume of approx. 367 million EUR could be preserved and restored), investments for national cultural institutions in East Germany (since 2004, until 2017 approx. 83 million EUR), Initiative Music (since 2007), German Motion Picture Fund (since 2016, until 2018 approx. 36 million EUR), National Prevention Programme against Islamist Extremism (since 2017), Excellent Orchestra Landscape Germany (since 2017, until the end of 2019 approx. 11 million EUR), Preservation of the written cultural heritage (since 2017, until November 2019 approx. 11 million EUR), Youth reminds (since 2019, 2.5 million EUR are available for 2019 and 2020).
At the federal level, support for artists is provided primarily through the self-organised institutions of artists and cultural actors – the Art Fund, the German Literature Fund, the Socio-Cultural Fund, the Performing Arts Fund and the projects supported by the German Music Council. This support includes, for example, nationally significant exhibitions of contemporary art, competitions, scholarships, prizes and other suitable forms.
One of the central actors in federal cultural promotion is the Federal Cultural Foundation (Bundeskulturstiftung). Its task is to promote programmes and projects in an international context. In addition to general project funding, which is not restricted to specific sectors or themes, the Federal Cultural Foundation develops its own programmes, currently for example “hochdrei” to strengthen district libraries and the World-Cinema Fund with support for the production and distribution of films that enrich the cinema landscape in Germany. Other programmes include TRAFO – Models for Culture in Transition, which promotes the “sustainable transformation of publicly funded cultural institutions into lively cultural and meeting places in rural regions” (since 2015, 11 model regions, 2015-2026: 26.5 million EUR). In addition, the Federal Cultural Foundation has set up a Digital Fund to encourage cultural institutions “to make better use of digital services in the areas of art, education and communication for the needs of the respective institutions or to develop them further as models”.
Another promotion programme is Architectural Art (Kunst am Bau). This is understood to be an obligation, particularly on the part of the state as the building owner, to use a certain proportion – usually around 1 % – of the construction costs of public buildings for works of art, in line with its building culture requirements. This obligation is laid down by the Federal Government and the federal states in corresponding regulations. Some cities (e.g. Munich and Dresden) have adopted this obligation at the municipal level.
In recent years, special programmes have been set up in some areas. These included numerous programmes at federal, state and municipal level for work with refugees.
Specific anniversaries have also been the occasion for promotion programmes, such as the Reformation Anniversary in 2017, the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus in 2019.
individual art / artist promotion is also particularly important for the
various sectors. Special support for companies, start-ups, self-employed and
freelancers in the cultural and creative industries is provided by the Federal
Government with the Competence Centre for Cultural and Creative Industries. The
centre has eight regional offices where it offers individual services and
 For example, in the guidelines for the execution of federal construction tasks (status: 5.8.2019).