Lev Nussberg

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Nussberg in November 1967. Photo: Alexander Grigorjev.
Born June 1, 1937(1937-06-01)
Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Soviet Union
Alexander Grigoriev and Nussberg shooting the exhibition in Sokolniki Park, Moscow, 1971.
Nussberg, Tatiana Bystrova, and others at his studio, 1971.

Painter, kinetic artist. Born Lev Valdemarovich Nussberg [Лев Вальдемарович Нусберг (Нуссберг)] in 1937 in Tashkent. His father Waldemar came from a German family of Nussberg gardeners, subsequently lost aristocratic prefix "von" and the letter "s" from his surname, became an architect, and in 1938 he was convicted for "spying for a foreign power" and disappeared in gulag in Ural. In the late 1940s, Lev with his mother, a singer and a technologist Raisa Bespalova, failed to emigrate to Poland and moved to Leningrad. Nussberg graduated from the Moscow Art School 1905 (MSKhSh, 1951-58). The eye-opening event for him was the Picasso exhibition in Moscow (1956).

"I want to work with electromagnetic fields, with pulsating plasma blobs in space, with the movement of gases and liquids, with glass and all kinds of optical effects, with the change of temperature and different smells and, of course, with the music." (Nussberg)

He formed the Dvizheniye group (1962-78) whose members included Francisco Infante and Viacheslav Koleichuk among others. The aim of the group was to create 'bio-centric' systems called Igrovye Bioniko-Kineticheskie Sistemy [playful bionic-kinetic systems]. A charismatic leader, Nussberg attracted people, but some members of the group (particularly Infante) found his management style 'totalitarian'. He also founded the group Dynamik in Leningrad.

Nussberg emigrated to Germany in 1976. He held a number of exhibitions, in Dusseldorf and Paris (1976), Venice, Netherlands and London (1977), Bochum, Turin, Kassel, New York (1978), and in Bochum (1979). In 1980 he moved to the United States where he lives in Orange, Connecticut, afterwards. He moved from kinetic art to surrealist painting, and keeps rewriting the history of the movement.





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