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FAQ about Coronavirus for students

Opening concept of the HFBK Hamburg from 1 June 2020

A further relaxation of the contact ban and distance regulation is expected in June. For HFBK, it is planned to offer classroom teaching in small groups (up to 5 persons), personal individual tutorials on site and working with up to 5 persons in the workshops and studios for the remaining lecture period starting in June. (Graduation candidates have priority due to the limitations.)

  • Building Lerchenfeld 2:
    Everyone entering the HFBK has to register at the front desk and have to sign out again when leaving.
  • Building Wartenau 15 and Finkenau 42:
    Contact tracing is possible via lists in each studio (list in transparent cover, pen on string, etc.).
  • The HFBK's digital courses continue to run in wintersemester 20/21.
  • Larger seminar formats are possible in the public rooms with the following maximum number of participants:
    • Room 213a/b – up to 10 participants
    • Room 213 – up to 6 participants
    • Room 11 – up to 12 participants
    • Lecture hall – up to 12 participants
    • Aula – up to 30 participants
    • Seminar room Wartenau – up to 10 participants
  • Please contact Irene Sommer for room registration and any technical requirements ( / Tel. 040-428989264)
  • There are no public events, except the Graduate Show 2020 with its own Hygiene Policy.
  • Here you can download the Workplace Hygiene Policy of the HFBK Hamburg.

Is it necessary to wear a mouth and nose cover in the HFBK buildings?

  • A mouth-and-nose covering must be worn on the general circulation areas of the university (entrance area, auditorium, staircases, corridors).
  • Those responsible for the rooms, such as workshop supervisor or administrative staff, can set special requirements for wearing a mouth-nose covering in their rooms.
  • Students please bring their own masks.

May I continue working in the studio?

May I continue working in the workshops of the HFBK?

  • Working in the workshops is possible for a limited number of people after consultation with the respective workshop supervisor. Detailed information can be found here on the website on the subpages of the individual workshops.
  • In the workshops, as in all other rooms of the HFBK, the currently valid hygiene measures must be strictly adhered to: At least 1.5 - 2 metres distance from each other, regular and thorough hand washing, coughing and sneezing labels and, if necessary, wearing a mouth and nose protector.
  • Tools or keyboards must be thoroughly cleaned/disinfected before and after use.

What are the opening times of the library?

  • Open Monday to Friday for research and book lending during the regular opening hours, working on site is possible again for a limited number of students.

Is the Mensa open?

The HFBK mensa is open again.

Is the winter semester 2020/21 being postponed?

  • The start of the lecture period of the Winter Semester 2020/21 is postponed to Monday, 2 November 2020.
  • The semester opening is postponed to Wednesday, 4 November 2020, 6 pm.
  • The end of the lecture period is postponed to Friday, 19 February 2021.
  • The opening of the Annual Exhibition is still on as originally planned: 11 February 2021.

How can the AStA help me?

The AStA of the HFBK can still be contacted by e-mail for individual and general matters for students of all study departments:

Due to the corona pandemic I got into a financial emergency. I have heard of a Bridging Aid for Students in Financial Emergency Situations – how can I apply?

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is helping students who are demonstrably in a financial or economic emergency situation owing to the corona pandemic with allowances totalling 100 million euros.

They are paid out in accordance with the guidelines issued by BMBF via the student service organisations – the Studierenden- or Studentenwerk (STW). 

The Studierendenwerk Hamburg is the contact for students who are enrolled at state and state-recognised universities in Hamburg.

Both german and international students who are enrolled at state and state-recognized universities in Germany can apply for the bridging allowance. Students who are already receiving a loan, scholarship or similar in the reference month can still receive a bridging allowance in case of financial hardship in accordance with the funding guidelines. Depending on proven need, between 100 euros and 500 euros can be paid as a non-repayable allowances.

Online application here:

You can find the most important questions about the bridging aid here.

As an international HFBK student I am "stranded" abroad, i.e. I cannot return to Hamburg due to the entry regulations. Where can I find support and do I have to fear disadvantages if I cannot be back in time for the start of the summer semester?

  • Students who are affected by this, please contact both their foreign representative office in Germany (embassies, consulates) and the German Embassy in the country where they are currently staying.
  • Please also contact the International Office.
  • If your residence permit for Germany is about to expire, please contact the Foreigners' Office in Hamburg immediately.
  • The HFBK will do everything possible to ensure that your situation does not have a negative impact on your studies. Please inform your professor as soon as possible. Should you fear difficulties with regard to an upcoming examination, please also contact as soon as possible.

Can I study at the HFBK in the winter semester 2020/21 as an international student (regularly enrolled or via an exchange program, such as Erasmus+ or ASA)?

If your home country is not subject to travel restrictions by the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, you can study at the HFBK Hamburg. In any case, please note the current designation of international risk areas by the RKI and the resulting quarantine or testing obligations. The rules for dealing with Covid-19 in the federal state of Hamburg can be found here. If you have any questions or uncertainties, please contact the International Office

As a student of the HFBK Hamburg in the winter semester 2020/21, can I take advantage of international mobility, e.g. within the Erasmus+ or ASA program, as planned?

Your planned stay abroad is possible in principle, but depends on the travel advice of the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany and the regulations of the host country. Try to contact your host university early on and plan your stay with special care. Please note any changes in lecture times and/or digital offers. If you have any questions or uncertainties, please also contact the International Office.

Important: The HFBK still imposes a general ban on entry for persons who have been in any other country of risk in the last 14 days (from 48h stay on, these persons must necessarily go into a 14-day quarantine) as well as for persons with symptoms of the Corona virus. Please do not go to a doctor's surgery yourself, so that you do not infect other people in an emergency, but call: Hotline for Hamburg: Tel. 428 284 000, Medical emergency service: Tel. 116 117

Art defies Corona: Graduate Show 2020

With a two-month delay, the Graduate Show took place this year on the 19 and 20 September. More than 140 students showed their artistic graduation projects, from painting to sound installation.

Teaching Art Online at the HFBK

How the university brings together its artistic interdisciplinary study structure with digital formats and their possibilities.

New articles at is the social network of the HFBK. It opens a digital forum for exchange and discussion in which students, teachers, guest authors, art critics and the interested public provide a wide range of content and perspectives.

HFBK Graduate Survey

Studying art - and what comes next? The clichéd images stand their ground: Those who have studied art either become taxi drivers, work in a bar or marry rich. But only very few people could really live from art – especially in times of global crises. The HFBK Hamburg wanted to know more about this and commissioned the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences at the University of Hamburg to conduct a broad-based survey of its graduates from the last 15 years.

How political is Social Design?

Social Design, as its own claim is often formulated, wants to address social grievances and ideally change them. Therefore, it sees itself as critical of society – and at the same time optimizes the existing. So what is the political dimension of Social Design – is it a motor for change or does it contribute to stabilizing and normalizing existing injustices?

Annual Exhibition 2020 at the HFBK

The HFBK’s traditional annual exhibition („Jahresausstellung“) opens in February every year. For three days the students – from first-years to post-graduates – present a broad spectrum of their current work and projects from all the different departments. All classrooms, studios and halls in the building are used. Interested visitors are cordially invited to gain an impression of the art currently being created at the HFBK.