Bike Series – Lorna Stewart – Knife Grinder

Lorna Stewart

“Knife Grinder is a performance that has developed out of a visit to Buenos Aires.  Lorna attaches a drive-belt to a bicycle  that connects a grindstone to the cogs used by the chain.  With the back wheel off the ground she activates this device which lifts her off the ground, thus supplying her with the armature for a performance and rendering her cycling stationary. ”

“She takes a knife and starts sharpening it on the grinder, which she works by continuing to cycle. The action of her body coordinates with that of the pedals and the grinder; the whole suggesting some fantastic machine such as one might read about in a novel by Raymond Roussel: deviser of cruel, if fictitious, machines, often designed to destroy the body.  However there is also a reference to leading and following – Stewart is motivating the movements of the bicycle.”

– Anthony Howell, April, 2005

Lorna Stewart is an English artist who graduated from the University of Wales Institute, Cardiff with a first class degree in 2000.  She won the Helen Gregory Memorial Scholarship in 2000 and received the Arts Admin Bursary in 2003.  Lorna Stewart works both as a solo artist and in collaboration with other artists.  She has regularly performed both nationally and internationally including at the Birmingham Ikon Galley as part of Fierce Festival 2004 and also performed in Nipaf, Japan, in the Recontre Festival, Quebec, the 11th Performance Art Conference, Essen, at The Ocean Club, London, and in The April Festival, Belgrade.  She also performed in a film by Jayne Parker and Anthony Howell called ‘The World Turned Upside Down’ for BBC2’s Dance on Camera season.  Lorna Stewart also dances tango, teaches and has performed for the Tango Volcano band and is a member of Tango Art.