Born in 1907 in New London, Connecticut, Thomas Silvestri Macaione's mother was of Italian and his father of Greek descent. When he was seven years old, the family went overseas to visit family in Sicily and got stranded in the turmoil of World War I. After he returned to the U.S., Tommy began training as a barber in 1925, and supported himself in the trade until World War II. While working as a barber, he developed a serious interest in painting, starting out with portraits and then landscape paintings in oil.
Macaione, medically discharged from the army, studied at the Rhode Island School of Design for two and a half years and then continued on the GI bill at the Art Students League in New York. After hi
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