Early this morning while most people were still asleep (unless, like us, you were too terrified for even one wink), the unthinkable became reality and Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States of America. Fearful citizens all over the country began hatching their own escape plans, and Canada’s immigration website even crashed from too much traffic. For the anti-Donald activists who continue to express a desire to flee Trump nation, now is your chance. And for the creative individuals seeking an escape, there’s no better city to migrate than Berlin. Here, we list the 8 reasons every American artist should hurry up and GTFO of the States now, before it’s too late.
1. a thriving artistic community
1. Berlin is already host to a thriving artistic community that is always welcoming newcomers, and some residents even top art power lists. Once you arrive, it’s only a matter of time until you’re completely settled in and living in your own little modern-day version of The Sun Also Rises or Giovanni’s Room. Sexy love triangles included, obviously.
2. Affordable healthcare
Once Trump is in office, you can be sure that Obamacare won’t last too long. Thankfully for Germany’s career creatives, the KSK, or Künstlersozialkasse, is a social program that offers reduced-cost healthcare to artists and freelance creatives. #ThanksObama now becomes #ThanksMerkel
3. subsidised studio spaces
America may have an affordable-housing crisis, but Berlin plays host to some cost-friendly housing options (won’t last long though). Government programs such as the Kulturwerk des bbk berlin GmbH ensure that artists are provided with cheap studio spaces at a subsidised price. Then you can live like a real Berlin bohemian and save the showering for when you wake up hungover at your Tinder date’s Neukölln flat.
This state assistance also extends to funding for gallery shows, with specific programs focusing on the country’s marginalised groups such as immigrants and women. Trump has a history of ignoring minority groups across the board, unless it’s to sexually harass or hate monger against them, so it’s nice to see a country actually attempts to taking care of everyone. There are also funding programs for literature projects, performing arts, public art, and Cross-disciplinary projects.
5. admission-free museum days
Stuck at a creative block? Always at the forefront of progressive cultural policy, many of the city’s museums offer free entry on a weekly or monthly basis. Head over to the Museumsportal Berlin for more information.
6. art prizes
Art prizes like the GASAG ensure healthy competition among your fellow creatives. Organised by the Berlinische Galerie, it is a testament to the city’s commitment towards nurturing young artists. Further, the Berlin Art Prize offers not only a cash prize, but a real deal trophy, too. And project spaces can also compete for €30,000 in prize money every year.
7. help with getting a visa
Bear in mind that as an American citizen, you are allowed in Germany for up to 90 days without a visa. Once you’re ready to apply for that visa, make sure you have all of your paperwork in order, as the city’s Ausländerbehörde is no joke. Many handy websites like this one can help escapees with getting everything ready for the intimidating appointment.
8. Free higher education
Berlin has some of the best universities in Germany, and some of the art programs feature art stars as faculty. At Universität der Künste Berlin you could even have the chance to have Ai Weiwei or Hito Steyerl as professors. But even better is that most programs are free of cost, all you have to pay is the administration fees which cover you travel in the city for a whole year.
9. cheap beer
Beer in Berlin is actually cheaper than bottled water but the best thing about it is that unlike most places in America and the UK you can drink in the streets.
10. best clubbing in Europe
If all else fails and you can’t seem to stop thinking about the shit show that America currently is, you can head to Berghain for a boogie and a beer. That is sure to take your mind off things for a while, right?