Drawing in the Nature Lab

In our workshop you will have the opportunity for intensive research of botanical phenomena. Based on this, we will go in search of artistic topics of investigation and new forms of expression.

"An artist must possess Nature. He must identify himself with her rhythms, by effort that will prepare the mastery which will later enable him to express himself in his own language." (Henri Matisse)

With three excursions we visit special research sites in Berlin and study the plant world in different ways: Systematics and stylization based on historical models in the archive of the Berlin University of the Arts (UdK); surface structures in the Microscopy Center of the Humboldt University of Berlin; richness of form and complexity in the Botanical Garden. In this first phase of the workshop we will teach drawing techniques that allow you to look more closely and accumulate a broad understanding of natural forms.

During the second phase of the workshop we will meet in the drawing lab of the UdK. In individual supervision you will further develop the inventories. Playing with translation and abstraction, you will expand your graphic vocabulary and transform it into your own interpretations.

Invited are visual artists, architects, designers, as well as self-taught artists with previous knowledge of drawing, who are interested in deepening their study of nature and who want to collectively open up perspectives for their respective artistic practice.


Day 1: Berlin University of the Arts Archive

  • Drawing from historical templates, models and plant samples

Day 2: Botanical Garden Berlin

  • Graphical field research

Day 3: Microscopy Centre of the Humboldt University of Berlin

  • Graphical investigation of plant sample material

Day 4 and 5: Berlin University of the Arts Laboratory for Drawing

  • Free working and individual consultations

Kerstin Hille is a visual artist and head of the laboratory for drawing at the Berlin University of the Arts. After graduating as a master student in 2001 at the weissensee kunsthochschule berlin, she worked at the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin in 2004, where she made scientific drawings in the zoology department. As an artist, she works in parallel with drawing and printmaking, forming intersections here and experimentally exploring the possibilities of these two media. Together with Angela Nikolai (née Bösl), she published PFLANZEN FORMEN LEHRE in 2016, which brings together historical and current positions in the study of plants in drawing at the Berlin University of the Arts.


Oliver Thie is a visual artist and researcher from Berlin. In cooperation projects with scientists, he establishes hand drawing methods as a way of knowledge production. In 2018 he observed a collection of minerals in the Temporary Object Laboratory at Tieranatomisches Theater Berlin. In 2016 he accompanied a biological expedition through the USA to study the social behaviour of aphids. From 2014 to 2016 he was artist in residence at the Natural History Museum Berlin, where he interpreted microstructures on the Hawaiian cave-planthopper (an insect).


Run period:
25.07.2022 – 29.07.2022
Course time:
10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Application Deadline:

Course fee:
EUR 550

Min. number of participants:
Max. number of participants:

Fully booked
Click the button below to register for the waiting list