Their work is incredibly meticulous and they take into account all the details of what they are creating because it is so important for them that their work is as close to reality as possible. When you look at their art, you can see that they don’t have a particular style. This is because they do not want to limit themselves to a style and they want to explore the possibilities that paper can offer. So they create everything from animals and plants to electronic objects and trains. The only constant is paper.
Their art is used for exhibitions but they are also commissioned to make pieces for magazine covers (Icon Magazine, n°104), magazine articles (Washington Post), menus for restaurants, greetings cards and posters and invitations for events. And sometimes they make stuff just for fun.
Their latest work “Le Cabinet des Curiosités” was exhibited at the PICK ME UP exhibition, a graphic design exhibition at Sommerset House in London in March 2012. It is a fascinating piece of work with an astounding attention to detail. From the feathers of the birds to the fragile wings of the insects, nothing has been overlooked. The contours and lines are so precise and the colours so intense, that you could be fooled into thinking they were created by a computer. They have made a video (a very accelerated one) of some of the pieces of the work in which you can see the intricate work that they do to produce such amazing creations.
My personal favourite work of Zim&Zou is “Back to Basics”, a collection of relatively old objects that as always are made out of paper and as always go into such astonishing detail. But it caught my attention most because I felt like I was revisiting my childhood, not only because of the familiar objects, but also because of the manual aspect of this art. There are objects such as tape walkmans, old cameras, a Nintendo controller, a Gameboy, floppy discs, a brick of a mobile phone… This work is like a very colourful journey through the 80s and 90s. At first, when you see all the objects together, you cannot appreciate all the details and it is not as impressive as when you look at them closely. Up close, you can really the full extent of the work. The tape is the prime example of this. The attention to detail goes as far as the film inside the tape and the screws in the corners. And of course, they have not forgotten the “Maxwell” brand and the A and B sides of the tape. What I think is most impressive is how they thought as far as the tape slotting neatly into the walkman which can itself be clipped onto a pair of trousers. They really have thought about how these objects fit together. And all this with lots of paper, lots of glue and of course, lots of time.
You can check out the galleries of their different works on their website and also watch some of the videos of how they created some of their pieces. Take a bit a time lose yourself in Zim&Zou’s creations and in their colourful world of graphic design with an arts and crafts twist.