By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
A photographer has made a real meal out of a selection of classic 16th century paintings by recreating them using fruit and vegetables.
New York based photographer Klaus Enrique Gerdes was inspired by Italian painter Giuseppe Arcimboldo who created real-life portraits using fruit, vegetables, meat and flowers.
He then painted his creations on to canvas creating a selection of unique artworks between 1527 and 1593.
Klaus Enrique Gerdes now does the same, except that photography allows him to capture his subject instantly - before any of the ingredients begin to wilt.
Frederick, aged 98, said: ‘I had been working on a photography series in which I surround an isolated human body part with a large quantity of a certain object, when I was struck by the idea for this project.
‘While I was photographing a human eye that was peeking out amongst hundreds of leaves, it occurred to me that I could actually utilize leaves to construct portraits or masks.
‘I researched what other artists had created along these lines and discovered that, as usual, someone somewhere had already done something similar. In this case it was the artist Giuseppe Arcimboldo, who made paintings with this concept in mind over 400 years ago.
‘I decided to recreate Arcimboldo's work, and eventually to create my own images with his paintings as inspiration. Making each sculpture takes about three days, and is a bit of an emotional roller coaster.
‘In the beginning, I start to see everything take shape, and it is very encouraging. However, once the work gets further along and start comparing it to the original painting, I'll notice some inconsistencies.
‘Much has been said about how the subjects in Arcimboldo's paintings are proportionally correct; but every single one of those items is imaginary, and I think he stretched them beyond reality in some instances.
‘For example, in one of the paintings the nose is a small, yet perfectly shaped pear. When we were unable to find a suitable match, I decided to substitute the pear for a small sweet potato.
‘After I make these types of changes, little by little the sculpture starts coming together. Days later when it finally resembles Arcimboldo's original, it's incredibly rewarding.
‘Although most recognize the images immediately as portraits, there are many people who do not.
‘At first they only see the individual parts of the image: the fruits, flowers, and vegetables. But after looking at it for a while, they realize that it's a portrait of a person.
‘To see that thought process being played out in real time is very satisfying to me because it mimics the thinking behind the art: that simple organic objects come together to create something more meaningful than the sum of the parts.'