Born in the city of Natal, Northeastern Brazil, Palatnik moved to Israel as a child. There he studied mechanics, physics and developed the typical qualities of an inventor. In the late 1940s, he began studies in the field of light and movement, which resulted in the Aparelho Cinecromático, exhibited in 1951 at the 1st International Biennial of São Paulo, where he received an honorable mention from the international jury. In 1954, he joined Grupo Frente, alongside Ivan Serpa, Ferreira Gullar, Mário Pedrosa, Lygia Clark and others. From 1964 he develops the Objetos Cinéticos, an unfolding of the cinecromático, showing the internal mechanism of operation and suppressing the projection of light. Mathematical rigor is a constant in his work, acting as an important resource for spatial ordering. He is considered internationally one of the pioneers of kinetic art.

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