A toasty take on celebrities

A NEW Zealand artist is attracting attention in the United States with his quirky pop culture portraits made entirely of toast.

Henry Hargreaves uses about 40 loaves of bread for each portrait.

That's an astonishing 900 or so pieces of toast which he painstaking chars using a creme brulee torch and then lays out to form mosaic portraits of celebrities like Marilyn Monroe, the Queen, and the Beatles.

He told the Daily Mail he got inspiration for the project after hearing about a piece of toast which was half-eaten by the fab four's George Harrison.

"It sold for an incredible amount at auction and gave me the idea to recreate their iconic portraits using toast."

He said he was "baffled" by the bread in the United States when he moved there.

"In New Zealand we have the most terrific selection of breads - but I soon realised Wonderbread is king in America.

"It's legendary for how long it survives without going off. It proved perfect for the toast art, giving me enough time to complete it without it going mouldy."

Hargreaves is not the first New Zealander to see the artistic potential of toast.

Maurice Bennett soaks his toast in polyurethane to preserve his billboard-sized artworks.

His portraits include Mona Lisa, Elvis Presley, Barack Obama and Jonah Lomu.

See more of Hentry Hargraves' work on his website.

Topics:  art toast

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