Maybe it’s a metaphor for life: a very short beginning, a very short end, and a huge middle bit where lots of stuff seems to be happening." David Shrigley

Beginning, Middle and End is a temporary work by David Shrigley made using two tonnes of unfired clay.

Shrigely makes the piece, which resembles a long sausage, anew in each gallery on the tour with the help of a team of volunteers.

In this short film, you can watch as students bring Shrigley's Beginning, Middle and End piece to life in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Beginning, Middle and End uses two tonnes of unfired clay. ©

Carlos Jimenez

The clay is made into one continuous sausage, approximately 400 metres long. ©

Carlos Jimenez

The process

'In the week before the exhibition opens to the public, young art students come and receive instructions from David about how to form this endless looping sausage, and they go to work, joining up the many pieces of clay.

It’s much like kindergarten play, affixing one to the next. The only rules are that the sausage be continuous, that you shouldn't be able to see the beginning or the end; just lots and lots of middle. 

Over the course of the exhibition, it breaks down, and cracks will form. The idea is that the work itself degenerates before being destroyed at the end of the exhibition and then re-made again when we move onto our next touring venue.'

Katrina Schwarz, British Council Curator