Born in the Eastern Highlands Tom attended the National Arts School, studying Visual Arts. He majored in and graduated with a Certificate in Sculpture and is currently the Artist in Residence at the University of Goroka. In 1999 Tom received the Commonwealth Foundation Arts and Crafts Award. He has exhibited and participated in symposiums throughout Australia, New Zealand, New Caledonia and Zimbabwe with work in major collections like the Tjibaou Culturel Centre in Noumea and the Museum of Ethnology in Frankfurt, Germany. Tom’s highly distinctive, angular, colourful figures are immediately recognisable in his paintings however also appear in his wood sculpture. He was part of the team presenting at the July 2009 Hailans to Ailans Exhibition held at the Rebecca Hossack Gallery in Solo, London showcasing his metal sculpture work.
Tom Deko explains his painting he made as contribution to the art project DEUTSCH 1914 / PAPUA NIUGINI 2014.