Professional Associations of our Members

VG Bild-Kunst works together with trade unions and associations that represent the interests of authors. In our summary below you will find information about the various professional associations.

AG Animationsfilm

Founded in 2011 as the Federal Association for the Animated Film Industry, the AG Animationsfilm strengthens the presence of animation in public and political perception, networks people in the industry, and represents their interests in relation to broadcasters, institutions and sponsors in film policy disputes. The working group organizes freelancers, producers, filmmakers, artists and employees from all areas of animation from all over Germany.

Allianz deutscher Designer

One of the largest professional organisations for freelance designers in Europe is the Alliance of German Designers (AGD) with some 3,000 members. It offers a network for qualified and committed creative artists from all sectors of design and supports its members in professional management matters.

Arbeitsgemeinschaft Dokumentarfilm e. V.

AG DOK was formed in 1980 and is now the largest German professional association in the field of independent cultural filmmaking with a membership of close on 850 authors, directors and producers. AG DOK acts as a lobbyist playing an active role in film and media policy as well as copyright debates in our country by issuing policy statements and presenting discussion papers. As a professional association, it offers its members a comprehensive range of services, representing their interests on a variety of superordinate committees. AG DOK also has a seat and a say on the structure of the collecting societies VG WORT and VG Bild-Kunst.

Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels

The Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels (Association of German Publishers and Booksellers) represents the interests of some 5,550 publishers, bookshops, second-hand bookshops, intermediary booksellers and publisher’s agents in Germany in relations with policymakers and the general public. Its work focuses on designing framework conditions for the book sector, which includes setting prices of books and ensuring fair copyright.

Berufsverband Freie Fotografen und Filmgestalter e. V.

For more than 40 years, the BFF Berufsverband Freie Fotografen und Filmgestalter e. V. (BFF Professional association of freelance photographers and film designers) has been the undisputed hallmark for top-quality professional photography in Germany and with its 500 freelance photographers ranks among the most renowned photographers’ associations in Europe.

Bundesverband Bildender Künstlerinnen und Künstler

BBK is a strong mutual benefit society for visual artists in Germany and its more than 10,000 members make it the largest organisation of artists in Europe. BBK is an umbrella organisation and its members are independently structured state associations, which in the larger non-city German states are in turn broken down into regional or district associations.

Bundesverband Filmschnitt Editor e.V.

The Bundesverband Filmschnitt Editor e.V. (BFS) was founded in 1984 and is the German network for freelance film and sound editors and their assistants. The aim of the organisation is to further the interests of editors in relations with television and radio broadcasters, the film industry, trade unions as well as ministries and legislative bodies. It is active in all areas of television and film policy  and the resulting legislation and regulations.

Berufsverband Kinematografie

With over 300 cameramen and –women and more than 500 members in total, the BVK association of film authors and their staff represents their goals in the field of labour, social and copyright law. Its secretariat is located in Munich. The industry forum of BVK serves as a meeting point for some 50 renowned companies that use BVK as a platform for communicating with image designers and discussing new developments in the field of cinematography as well as technical and organisational issues.

Bundesverband Regie e.V.

BVR is the professional organisation representing authors of audiovisual media. It has over 700 members and was formed in 1975, making it one of the oldest associations in the film and television sector.

Bundesverband der Pressebild-Agenturen und Bildarchive e.V.

BVPA was formed in Berlin in 1970 and represents the entire spectrum of image and film offerings covering news, celebrities, history, art and special categories for handling and marketing visual media. BVPA is a member of IPTC (International Press Telecommunications Council).

Deutscher Designertag

The Deutscher German Designertag (German Designer Forum) is the umbrella organisation of German designer associations. It was formed in 1975 and is tasked with protecting the common interests of designers in relations with the general public and policymakers. It promotes design applications, in particular in the context of sustainable design. Within the scope of the  German Cultural Council, the central organisation of federal cultural associations, it forms the "Design Section".

Deutsche Journalistinnen- und Journalisten-Union

The German Union for journalists (dju) represents the interests of all ver.di members working as full-time journalists in words, pictures, sound or layout, documentation or archives or are training to be a journalist. Dju ver.di activities focus mainly on supporting and representing the work-related, social, commercial, cultural and legal interests of professionally working journalists, on developing and shaping the job outline “journalism”, especially with regard to education and further training, in media policies doing justice to journalism’s value within democracy. Dju stands up for developing the content of collective agreements, professional fee recommendation and common remuneration rules within securing and realizing all information freedom, freedom of opinion and press freedom as embedded in the constitution.

Deutscher Journalisten-Verband

With a membership of 38,000, the Deutscher Journalisten-Verband (DJV = German Federation of Journalists) is Germany’s largest association of journalists. DJV is both a professional body and trade union and its members include permanent employees as well as freelance journalists catering for all branches of the media. As an organisation of experts, it can influence legislation on all issues affecting journalism and journalists.

Deutscher Künstlerbund

The Deutscher Künstlerbund (Association of German Artists) sees itself as a platform for artistic confrontation and critical discourse. Numerous events addressing current topics and contemporary  positions are held in its project room in the centre of Berlin. Members of the Deutscher Künstlerbund provide input on national and international bodies, boards of trustees and committees, which are also involved in an advisory capacity in the development of legislative regulations.


FREELENS was formed in 1995 by 128 photojournalists to counteract the progressive deterioration in working conditions of photographers. Today, the professional body has over 2,400 members making it the biggest organisation for photojournalists and photographers in Germany. FREELENS stands up for photographers on human, political and cultural level.


GEDOK e.V. with more than 2,400 members in 23 cities constitutes the eldest and Europe-wide largest network of artists of the fine, applied and performing arts as well as in music and literature. The association views itself as link between artists and the public, its concerns being the focused support of artists’ creative talents with special consideration of their particular life and work situation. The association is recognized as non-profit organisation and finances itself by membership fees, donations as well as project-bound grants. Membership admittance is being organized by way of the regional groups.

Illustratoren Organisation e.V.

In 2002, the  Illustrators’ Organisation (IO) was set up in Hamburg with the aim of representing the artistic, political and economic interests of illustrators from the fields of publishing, advertising, film and art in Germany. IO supports its members – currently totalling over 1,400 – primarily on economic issues.

Verband der Berufsgruppen Szenenbild und Kostümbild e.V

The V/S/K Verband (Association of set designers and costume designers) was founded in 1983 and sees itself as a network for all employees in these professional groups. Members of the V/S/K Verband include not only creative film artists who are already well established, but also promising young talent in the fields of costume and set design.


The Fachgruppe Bildende Kunst (Visual Arts Section) belongs to the Media, Art and Industry division of ver.di - Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft. ver.di is the trade union for all culture and media professionals. It stands up for a democratic, solidarity-minded and futureproof society and unites 1,700 professional artists in its Visual Arts Section.