Using technology and an array of special effects, Marco Tempest develops immersive environments that allow viewers to viscerally experience the magic of technology.

Why you should listen

Marco Tempest began his performing career as a stage magician and manipulator, winning awards and establishing an international reputation as a master illusionist. His interest in computer-generated imagery led him to incorporate video and digital technology in his work -- and eventually to develop of a new form of contemporary illusion. 

Tempest is the executive director of the NYC MagicLab, a science consortium exploring illusion and digital technology. He is deeply embedded in the tech industry and has regular interactions with product teams in an advisory capacity, and as a consultant or developer for prototype consumer technologies. He is a Director's Fellow at the MIT Media Lab and a creative consultant at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

More news and ideas from Marco Tempest


A first glimpse at the TEDSummit 2019 speaker lineup

May 21, 2019

With TEDSummit 2019 just two months away, it’s time to unveil the first group of speakers that will take to the stage in Edinburgh, Scotland, from July 21-25. Three years ago, more than 1,000 members of the TED global community convened in Banff, Canada, for the first-ever TEDSummit. We talked about the fracturing state of […]

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Live from TEDSummit 2016

Pathways: Notes from Session 4 of TEDSummit

June 29, 2016

This morning’s Session 4 explored the ways we connect — the pathways our money takes, our communication, our trust, even our intelligence(s). Read on: Trust in your neighbor, but maybe not in your bank. Why is it that, despite being told “don’t get into a car with a stranger” for as long as we can remember, […]

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Do we like robots better if they look like us?

May 6, 2014

In Marco Tempest’s latest TED Talk, he introduces EDI the robot, which dances, makes jokes, does impressions of Woody Allen and even performs magic tricks. Designed to aid in factory production, EDI also has a screen programmed with facial expressions, begging the question: Why do we build robots with human-like faces and expressions?

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