WHO: Tony Carneiro, installation artist and a 2006 graduate of the joint master's degree program of Tufts University and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
HOMETOWN: West Warwick, Rhode Island.
IMAGINARY IDOL: Tony Trouble, a swinging single, actor, and recording studio owner.
ROOM-INATIONS: "Tony Trouble’s Hipwact Sock Hop" is an installation of three rooms in Tony’s apartment and captures the essence of "the good life": a TV Lounge, the Hall of Shag Stars (lined with fake fur), and the Movin’ and Groovin’ Washroom, each furnished with a "fantastical reinterpretation of the golden age of rock ’n’ roll."
REAL-LIFE MUSE: Surgery to remove a brain tumor left Carneiro legally blind. Medication weakened his bones, causing his left hip to shatter from a fall in 2002. After three years of pain, Carneiro had hip replacement surgery at age 35. But the installation, shown at his thesis exhibition at Aidekman Arts Center this spring, responds to an irrepressible urge to look on the bright side. "I try to think optimistically about things," says Carneiro. "Life is too short to dwell on your problems. I show Tony Trouble living out my dreams and desires—but I’m also poking fun at the excessive luxury of his life. He has everything, but who wants everything?"