Tom Sepe is a multimedia artist, fabricator, performer, designer and organizer with a penchant for collaboration, community and activism. He credits his multidisciplinary tendencies to his deep roots in theater, where at the age of five, he joined the performance group in his hometown of Moraga, CA. From acting and singing, to painting and building, to sound and lighting production, Tom came of age in an atmosphere of can-do ingenuity and creative inspiration.
After majoring in physics and then shifting to environmental studies, Tom returned to the arts to find his sweet spot of marrying art, technology and social issues. In 1995 he received his BA in Creative Studies with a focus on multi-disciplinary art and performance from the prestigious College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara.
As an activist he participated in protests and actions against the first Persian Gulf war, as well as numerous environmental causes. This provided a strong foundation of proactive leadership and organizing skills, which have carried over into his professional art and fabrication career.
Though billed as a party in the desert, the annual Burning Man Art Festival provided Tom an unprecedented opportunity to work on large-scale interactive art installations and collaborate with other artists and volunteers on their unique projects. He’s worked extensively with Michael Christian to engineer, fabricate and install many of his fantastical sculptures, over the course of a decade. He’s also worked with Five Ton Crane, an Oakland, CA based artist collective, to build and install the Steampunk Treehouse, the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, and the Nautilus Submarine Art Car, as well as numerous smaller projects.
During this time he designed and built the famous Whirlygig Emoto – the world’s first steam electric hybrid time machine, as well as the Raygun Rover Art Car and the Runamock Fishvan, which was born out of the “How to Build and Art Car” class that Tom pioneered at the Crucible, an industrial-arts school in West Oakland, CA.
Tom has been produced numerous video projects for The Crucible, He’s filmed, edited and produced promos, full-length theater productions and a documentary about the Crucible’s ‘Diemoto’, a bio-diesel powered custom motorcycle that set the world-land speed record in 2007. In 2008 he traveled to Dharmasala India to film and produce a mini-documentary about Tibetan Exiles. He continues to produce timelapses and “making of” videos of his various projects.
From 2012-2015, Tom worked as a Technical Director for Obscura Digital designing, building and installing advanced boutique technology solutions ranging from touch-screen kitchen tables to larger-than-life immersive video projection events. Obscura honed Tom’s skills as a project engineer, coordinating a crew, managing large budgets, teams of fabricators, software designers and event producers, while satisfying high profile clients such as Google, Facebook, YouTube, Diageo, Genentech, Westfield and the City of San Francisco.
In 2015 Tom was a part of the team that hacked a Tesla Model S electric car, transforming it into a mobile projections vehicle for the environmental documentary Racing Extinction, directed by academy winning director Louie Psihoyos.
Tom is currently based in Portland, Oregon, but travels frequently for work and special projects.
3D modeling, 3D printing, Projection Mapping, Interactive Technology, Windows, Mac OS & Linux, Micro-controller Programming, LED and Light Art, Robotics, Specialty Electronics Applications, Welding and Metal Fabrication, Woodworking and Custom Construction, Mechanic, Graphic Design, Web Design, Digital Video Production and Editing, Professional Chef, Community and Events organizer, Poet and writer of fictional truths, Storyteller, Letterpress and Screen printing, Bookmaking and Paper-making.
Sept 1989 - Dec 1994
UCSB Bachelor Of Arts
Work & Experience
Technical Director Obscura DigitalJune 2011 - Dec 2014
- 3D printing
- CNC laser
- CNC plasma
- CNC router
- fine art sculpture
- graphic design
- letterpress printing
- Multi-disciplinary Fine Arts education
- screen printing
- Video Editing
- Video Production