Steve Casino, known as the nut artist due to his impressive peanut sculptures, is a former caricaturist, who works for the toy company Bang Zoom Design. Whist eating a handful of peanuts, Casino was struck by one’s resemblance to himself, “I have a shaved head and glasses, so I look like a peanut.” Quickly sketching a self-portrait across its surface, not only earned a colleague’s chuckle but sparked his line of playful peanut sculptures capturing celebrities, characters, monsters, bands and even objects.
“Half of the caricature I do is finding the right peanut,” he says. “So I have my daughters — they’re 7 and 11 — helping me in the basement.” After finding the perfectly shaped peanut, removing the meat, gluing the shell, creating arms and legs, using wood fill and paint to finish the surface. The peanut completely transcends its nutty ancestry, except for the back which Casino intentionally leaves unfinished.