Niklas Zimmer completed his Honours degree in Fine Art (sculpture) at the University of Cape Town in 1996, and his research MA(FA) on jazz photography (which interconnected reflections on Fine Arts, Social History and Music) in 2012. He also has a BA in Education from University of Cologne.
He worked for three years as an art teacher, heading the Visual Arts Department at the German International School in Cape Town. After being employed by the Centre for Popular Memory (UCT) as an audio specialist and digitisation manager, he is now the Head of Digital Library Services at UCT Libraries.
Zimmer occasionally lectures in theory and discourse of art, and gives workshops in video, sound and photography. He also works as an independent photographer and drummer. Zimmer has performed, exhibited and published in the fields of visual art studies, theory of photography and sound studies.