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Artist, Former WYSO Programmer Jud Yalkut, 1938-2013

Darlin Blanco-Lozano

Jud Yalkut, well known artist and pioneer of Wright State University’s film and video department, passed away Tuesday, July 23, at the age of 75. Born in New York City in 1938, Yalkut moved to Dayton in 1973, where he became an Assistant Professor of Art at Wright State, founding the university's first film and video program. He also taught at Sinclair Community College and Xavier University in Cincinnati.

Yalkut’s work connects history, contemporary society, and personal expression. His films and other works aren’t intended to tell a story so much as they are meant to overload your senses and expand your mind. In the artist's own words, his work was about "enhancing different forms of experiencing life." He was a master of employing different mediums to achieve this goal, and was especially well-known for his explorations with emerging technologies, from film to video to holography. However, for Yalkut, "I was always interested in using media as a means of humanizing technology, so it always had a spiritual context to it for me.”

As an artist, Yalkut was the recipient of numerous fellowships and grants from the Ohio Arts Council, the New York State Council on the Arts, the Montgomery County Arts and Cultural District. In addition to his work creating and teaching art, Yalkut was an active community figure and found time to host a classical music show on WYSO from 1974-1979.

Jud Yalkut’s nearly 50-year artistic career included collaborations with fellow film and video trailblazer Nam June Paik as well as multimedia superstar Yayoi Kasuma, and landed him exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. His most recent exhibition, “Visions and Sur-realities,” opened at the University of Dayton in February. Some of Yalkut’s artwork is currently on display at the Dayton Visual Arts Center.