5 July 2024


browse some of our highlights, photos and the official aftermovie

The Art Department festival days might be long gone but all the awesome heart-warming community vibes, the joys of getting together experiencing exceptional talks and demos, alongside the fun moments a very summerish Berlin provided, still very much linger in our minds.

If we had to describe TAD Berlin in just one word (a game we secretly like to play at every fest we organise), it would probably be “community”. A recurrent theme also in some of the artist talks and panels, perhaps also enhanced by the current state of the industry, the importance of supporting each other has never seemed so poignant.

Thank you all, the organisers and attendees, so much for the wonderful experience of the past two days! I am new to the visual arts community and am so happy to find out you are so friendly and welcoming and supportive!!! Thank you and hope we will see each other again soon, and wish everyone good luck in the future!” (Lu, on Playgrounds Discord)

Music to our ears in this post event feedback, but then again, this was the tone set by our guests and audience right from the very beginning of our festival. Bastien Grivet  titled his talk H.I.M.M.H.W.W.S.B.P.P. (How I Managed my Mental Health While Working on Some of the Biggest Projects on the Planet). A presentation in which he shared lots of relatable issues, including his way of dealing with the foes of procrastination “Don’t fight it, because you have actually already lost” he said. “I just take 24 hours for myself in which I don’t work. Don’t stretch them longer though, otherwise you won’t manage to get back in rhythm.

During his fully-packed Procreate demo, talk and paint-over session, Nicholas Kole, did not shy away from sharing his recent pains of having a project close to his heart, cancelled. Without bitterness (as you can also see in the various photos taken by our wonderful Willeke Machiels, but also in this sketch created by one of our visitors), he simply engaged in very honest conversations, such as one might have with a close group of friends rather than audiences of couple hundreds people.

In their talk 9B Collective also highlighted the importance of communities as a form of validation especially when dealing with rather unreasonable requests from clients.

“Listen to the community feedback even if you don‘t decide to follow it” prompted Larian‘s Alena Dubrovina when presenting the ways the studio worked with the reactions of users to Bladur‘s Gate III game design.

Communities are very important” stressed also Peter Han. He further elaborated how he was encouraged to make a comic by many people online, before gaining the courage to actually start working on it.


The fact that artists felt comfortable to share even the ugly sides of artist life, was also a testament of the general supportive vibes we were all experiencing. “Everybody that has had a bad drawing day knows how hideous it is“, Rob Bliss shared. “I have burnt works in the past because I did not want anybody else to see them“.

The festival‘s closing panel Social Media Pros and Cons provided an excellent wrapping up of the discussion about communities, not just about their importance but also their diversity. The guests talked about the value of online communities but how offline interactions and regular i.r.l. meetings with the communities are no less important.

Indeed, while going from the Loft to the Main Stage, passing the outside area, one could not help notice the various groups of people networking, chatting and seemingly having a pretty amazing time. Our Discord server also provided some nice stories as people that talked with each other on site and managed to connect also online after the festival with the help of our community!

And then who could forget the afterparties? After all, how often do we get to get our bodies in motion on the groovy vibes hand-picked by Rob Bliss and DJ ChewChew?
To wrap-up The Art Department Berlin we got together in the very cozy Funkhaus, headquarters of our awesome partners Drink & Draw Berlin. It warmed our hearts to see little hubs everywhere drawing, sharing and looking sketch-books, having fun and enjoying very relaxed conversations.

As we already started the preparations for the 2025 Art Department Editions (for which you can already get your tickets here), it will be this persisting image of an absolutely amazing community that is going to be filling us with creative energy! Thank you, dear friends and TAD 2024 attendees for once again inspiring us to imagine everything!