Vyacheslav Artyomov was born in Moscow in 1940. He first studied physics at the University of Moscow, then transferred to the Tchaikovsky Conservatory where he studied composition with Nikolai Sidelnikov until 1968.
He was active as an editor at the Moscow publishers "Musyka" for several years.
In 1975 he founded the improvisation group "Astreya" together with the composers Sofia Gubaidulina and Viktor Suslin.
He has been a freelance composer since 1979.