Zenith Art System GmbH was founded in the year 2000 by Klaus-Dieter Kirsch in Bonn, the former German capital. Dirk Bilgen became a partner in the company in 2007 and has taken over the company since 2010.
The aim of the company is to distribute machines and materials for the printing, laminating and presentation of images.
From the beginning, the idea was to develop new techniques and spread the knowledge we have gathered. For example, we present laminating techniques live at many trade fairs throughout Europe and have often given training sessions in company showrooms or even directly on the customers` premises.
Zenith was the first company to introduce to the European picture framers` and photographers the benefits of cold mounting and laminating using manual laminators.
For the emerging large-format inkjet printers, we developed a 100% cotton canvas, which is delivered in the same quality as it was over 10 years ago and can be printed with the same ICC-Profile.
Zenith was then decisively involved in the development of the technology of the face mounting to acrylic glass by means of an Optical Clear mounting film and able to pass on the method and know-how.
After the beginnings with a very manageable program, Zenith now provide almost everything digital printers or photographers need to bring your images into reality.
In doing so, the principle remains to develop as far as possible all products ourselves, or to make them exclusively to us, in order to be able to deliver a high and, above all, consistent quality.
The development of the company itself is also steadily progressing. After the humble beginnings in a small room in Meckenheim, a large team is now working to help you with your daily requirements.
In Asia, almost all images, prints, etc. are protected with cold laminating films on mechanical presses. Electrical, hot or even hot vacuum presses are hardly ever used there. This kind of "cold" image enhancement is not only cheaper, but also offers a number of advantages.
At many trade fairs, the manual laminators and the principle of cold finishing were presented by us and have always attracted great attention.
The logical step was to develop films oriented to these cold laminators. These can be processed with an extra thick release liner making them far easier to use than conventional laminating films. In addition, the composition of the films has been altered so that they can be heated even without warming up to provide a perfect result without a "silvering effect".
As a result, they are qualitatively superior to all laminating films available on the market.
A special feature here is the structured films, which are particularly popular with picture-framers and photographers. However, the new, very scratch-resistant “Pearl" structured film is increasingly used in the advertising industry e.g. as a "pop-up protective film", the “Sand” structured film is also used to protect floor advertising.
At the request of larger customers from the advertising industry, we developed a "slimmed down" version of the standard laminating films (matt, gloss and satin mat) which are applied using an electric laminator.
Our laminating films are made in the Far East. Here we buy the raw materials from well-known manufacturers and have them processed according to our specifications.
We are therefore, despite our small sized company, a manufacturer of high-quality films and not an importer of "less expensive Chinese products" ...
In co-operation with a German manufacturer in the field of adhesive technology, we developed double-sided adhesive films and self-adhesive media which cannot be produced with sufficient quality in Asia.
We developed a special adhesive film that allows images to be mounted to MDF boards or other rough substrates (such as cabinet doors, etc.). .
Particularly successful is the development of our ultra-clear adhesive film KOC, which enables all customers to perform adhesive bonding behind acrylic glass using a manual laminator and to be independent of the Diasec process. We are immensely proud of this adhesive film and even because of the highly technical procedure in manufacturing; we are still able to offer this at a reasonable price.
A co-operation with a manufacturer in the Far East enabled us to supply very high quality “self-healing” cutting mats. Here, too, we have made sure that these are of the highest quality especially in comparison to other suppliers. We have ourselves invested, together with this manufacturer in a new, large furnace, which allows us to produce mats of up to 100x200cm in the vulcanization process. The five layers are "baked" together and are clearly superior to the usual mats that have simply been glued together, giving our mats a unique quality in terms of longevity.
Since 2008, we have also been able to offer media for pigment inks. In close collaboration with large picture framing producers and after two years of development work, we succeeded in producing an outstanding canvas. The next step was the development of a synthetic paper for acrylic glass, face mounting, which we now also offer in self-adhesive rolls.
In recent years, more and more products have been added to the program; mostly because of the recommendations from our customers. Clever and very useful tools are always available to our ever expanding programme……