The channel will be available to all Sky customers in the two countries until January 23 next year and will be available as part of the Sky Entertainment package thereafter.
Content from the channel will also be available on the Sky Go mobile TV and Sky On-Demand services.
Elke Walthelm, executive vice-president, content at Sky Germany, said that the launch wouldmake Sky the home of “the first pure art and culture channel in Germany and Austria”.
The channel will feature the first production from the Sky Arts Production Hub, the commissioning and production centre of excellence based in Milan, dedicated to creating arts programming for Sky customers across Europe.
Master of Photography (pictured), a European talent contest open to professional and amateur photographers, will offer a €150,000 (US$167,000) prize to the winner from a final line-up of twelve contestants to be recognised as ‘Best New European Photographer’. The show will be hosted by actress Isabella Rosselini.
Other programmes to air on the channel include Amy: The Girl Behind the Name about singer Amy Winehouse and Salt of the Earth, Wim Wneders’ film about Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado.
Kapitelweise, the first German Sky Arts HD in-house production, will feature German-language authors talking about their work.