Bernd Zimmer was born in 1948 in Planegg (Bavaria). Until 1971 he worked at a pub­lishing house. In 1973 he moved to West Berlin and took courses in philosophy and religious studies at the Free University of Berlin. In 1977 he was a founding member of the Galerie am Moritzplatz. In 1979 he received the Karl Schmidt-Rottluff Scholarship and in 1982 a scholarship for Villa Massimo in Rome. In 1984 he moved back to Bavaria, where he has since lived and worked. He founded the Bernd Zimmer Art Foundation there in 2012 where, as an art project, he has been building a columned stoa since 2018.