Born in Moscow in 1957. Graduated from the Department of Art History and Theory of the Faculty of History at Lomonosov Moscow State University. Holds a PhD in Art History.
From 1980 till 1990 worked as curator of contemporary art at the Pushkin National Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow. From 1992 to 1997 was director of the Center for Contemporary Art (CAC) in Moscow.
He curated the Russian participation in the Istanbul Biennale (1992), the Venice Biennale (1995, 2003), the São Paolo Biennale (2002, 2004), and the Valencia Biennale (2001). He was on the curatorial team for Manifesta 1 in Rotterdam in 1996. In 2005 he curated the first Central Asia Pavilion at the Venice Biennale. In 2007 he realized a large-scale exhibition project Progressive Nostalgia: Art from the Former USSR at the Centro per l’arte contemporanea Luigi Pecci (Prato, Italy), Benaki Museum (Athens, Greece), KUMU (Tallinn, Estonia), and KIASMA (Helsinki, Finland). His latest exhibition project was The Impossible Community realized in 2011 at the Moscow Museum for Modern Art.
In 1993, Viktor founded Moscow Art Magazine and has been its editor-in-chief ever since; in 2003, he founded Manifesta Journal: Journal of Contemporary Curatorship (Amsterdam) and has been an editor there since 2011. He is author of numerous publications, including two books: Another and Different (Moscow, NLO Publishing, 2004), and Five Lectures on Curatorship (Moscow, AdMarginem Publishing, 2014).
From October 2010, he is a Chairman of the International Foundation Manifesta. Docent of the Nuova Academia Belle Arti (NABA), Milano, and Honorary Doctor of the Helsinki University for Art and Design. He lives in Moscow (Russia) and Ceglie Messapica (Italy).