Cornelia Schleime was born in 1953 in East Berlin. From 1975 to 1980 she studied painting and graphic art at the Academy of Art in Dresden. She moved to West Berlin in 1984. In 1989 she was awarded a PS1 Scholarship of the DAAD for a one-year working stay in New York. In 2003 she received the Gabriele Münter Prize, the Fred Thieler Prize in 2004 and in 2016 the Hannah Höch Prize. Schleime lives and works in Berlin, in the Ruppiner Land (Brandenburg) and on La Palma (Spain).