Bio

YAKO 440 is a multi-instrumentalist, beatboxer, beat maker and graffiti writer/visual artist. His multi-media video practice integrates his audio and visual skill sets. In recent years his visual style has evolved into a language of symbols called YakoGlyphs. YakoGlyphs remix folk art, pop art, and multilingual calligraphy with street art. Yako draws inspiration from ancient/ pre-colonial/ pre-agricultural nomadic arts and crafts such as cave paintings, tattoos, and patterns in woven textiles from every continent and spiritual traditions representing his beliefs as an Omnist. Sometimes layered with collage of his own photos and those sampled from the web, Yako places religious iconography alongside Hip-Hop imagery. In 2015 Yako travelled to Tanzania with the cultural exchange program Next Level to teach and perform with local Hip Hop artists, and previously toured Istanbul and Gambia as a cultural ambassador through the U.S. State Department. He has released 3 albums as a duo with MC/beatboxer Baba Israel and in 2015 they formed the live Hip Hop/Spoken Word collective Soul Inscribed with vocalists Duv and Grace Galu, saxophonist Sean Nowell, and drummer Doron Lev. Soul Inscribed released their self titled debut album and toured Russia, Taiwan, Indonesia & Mauritius with American Music Abroad in February 2016. In theater Yako has created original music for Hip Hop Theater productions "How To Break" by Aaron Jafferis, Baba Israel’s “Boombap Meditations," “The Spinning Wheel” which was awarded the BRIC fireworks residency and NYSCA Composer’s Grant for 2016. Soul Inscribed and Yako 440 will be resident artists at HERE Arts in SOHO 2018-2020. He holds an MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College (USA) and has led music and visual art workshops at home and abroad.