Born in Moscow, Val Telberg lived in China, Japan, and Korea during his youth. He studied painting at the Art Student’s League, New York, in 1942, where he was exposed to the surrealism movement and experimental filmmaking. To support his painting, Telberg traveled from Florida to Massachusettes, printing photographs of nightclub patrons and working at photographic concession stands where people posed with cutouts of celebrities. In 1945, he returned to New York and produced narrative, surrealist photographs using sandwiched, bleached or burned negatives and double exposure within the camera. His later work evolved to large scale, scroll-like multiple images.
Around that time, Mr. Telberg began experimenting with the multiple-image photographic technique for which he became known. His photomontages, which sometimes were mural-size, consisted of layered images of figures in motion and had a dreamlike weightlessness associated with Surrealism. He had his first major show at the Brooklyn Museum in 1948. In the mid-1950’s he collaborated with Nin, creating images for the 1958 edition of her book “The House of Incest.”
In 1942 he began to study painting at the Art Students League in New York City; there he met Kathleen Lambing, who taught him photography and whom he married in 1944. His first professional photographic experience came that year, when he was employed as a nightclub photographer in Florida and later at a portrait concession in Fall River, Massachusetts. In 1948 he returned to New York and did freelance photography. In addition to his commercial endeavors, Telberg did his own work, much of which involved experimental printing from multiple negatives.
“Henriette Theodora Markovitch (22 November 1907 – 16 July 1997), known as Dora Maar, was a French photographer, painter, and poet.”
“Man Ray (born Emmanuel Radnitzky; August 27, 1890 – November 18, 1976) was an American visual artist who spent most of his career in France. He was a significant contributor to the Dada and Surrealist movements, although his ties to each were informal. He produced major works in a variety of media but considered himself a painter above all. He was best known for his photography, and he was a renowned fashion and portrait photographer. Man Ray is also noted for his work with photograms, which he called “rayographs” in reference to himself.”
“the young women serious face, lit up by pale blue eyes which looked all the paler because of her thick eyebrows; a sensitive uneasy face, with light and shade passing alternately over it. She kept driving a small pointed pen-knife between her fingers into the wood of the table. Sometimes she missed and a drop of blood appeared between the roses embroidered on her black gloves… Picasso would ask Dora to give him the gloves and would lock them up in the showcase he kept for his mementos.”