Artist wins a place in the prestigious Royal Academy exhibition for her framed collection of CORNFLAKES (but she prefers toast for breakfast)

  • Anne Griffiths, 54, of Wantage, Oxford, compared 11 different cornflake brands
  • She then chose 84 different pieces and displayed them in a glass cabinet
  • She labelled them all with a numerical code that identifies each one
  • The piece was selected by Grayson Perry for this year’s Summer Exhibition 

An artist has won a place in the Royal Academy’s prestigious exhibition for her framed collection of different-sized cornflakes.

Anne Griffiths, 54, of Wantage, Oxford, compared 11 cornflake brands ranging from Nestle’s gluten-free to Tesco’s Everyday Value brand to create the very crispy piece.

The full-time artist, who prefers marmalade on toast for breakfast rather than cereal, claims the piece explores ‘taxonomy’ – a branch of science dedicated to classification – and how the way in which an object is displayed can affect how it is perceived and valued.

The piece was selected by Turner Prize winner Grayson Perry, 58, and is now on show at the 250th anniversary of the Royal Academy of Arts’ Summer Exhibition in London which opened two weeks ago.

Artist Anne Griffiths with her taxonomy of breakfast cereal flakes on display at the Royal Academy

There are 84 different cornflakes in Anne’s Royal Academy work, which are all different sizes and brands

Anne presented her cornflakes in a glass cabinet in individual boxes, with labels to identify the different brands.

Among the cornflakes in the piece are ones from Whole Earth Organic boxes and Kellogg’s Cornflakes.

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The piece is titled: ‘Taxonomy of the Cornflake.’  

Anne, who can now tell a gluten free corn flake from a Kellog’s cornflake, said: ‘If you look at them, they are amazing shapes.There are so many variations and every single one is unique.

Anne at work putting together her latest work for the Royal Academy: Taxonomy of the Cornflake. She spent 20 minutes pinning each cornflake delicately inside a jewellery box

‘Once something is put in a display cabinet and pinned precisely with a number then people become interested.

‘It engages the viewer and it absolutely changes people’s perceptions – how an object is displayed affects what we consider to be precious.’

Anne spent hours rummaging through the contents of each cornflake box, and then spread them across a table at her art studio in Oxford, to find the perfect specimens.

She then spent a further 20 minutes to categorise, label and pin each cornflake into individual jewellery boxes.

Anne then labelled each cornflake with a numerical code that identifies it according to size, colour, texture, shape, brand, contortion, conjoinment and edge

The 84 ‘perfect cornflake portraits’ were numerically coded according to size, colour, texture, shape, brand, contortion, conjoinment and edge and arranged in a display cabinet with the list displayed to one side.

The conjoinment category lists which of the cornflakes are singular flakes and which of them have been conjoined during the baking process to make double or triple cornflakes.

Anne is a full-time artist and she won a place at the latest Royal Academy Summer Exhibition

Anne, who lives in Wantage, Oxford, added: ‘I collect all sorts of ridiculous things like coffee cup lids, bottle lids, lolly sticks and old light bulbs.

‘I’ve always collected things and I’ve always been interested in museology and the practices a museum curator might go through during the process of acquiring a collection and transforming into a museum object.

‘I had probably been looking at some sort of butterfly or insect collection and thinking about how to pin these beautiful creatures into tiny cabinets.

‘Once you do that, they’re no longer like a dead butterfly you find on the windowsill or the beautiful objects you seen flying around. Our perceptions absolutely change.

‘It was a combination of all those ideas that inspired me.’

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