Lindsey’s got DIY fixes down to a fine art...

Fine art: Lindsey Mendick with broken bike at Bank Street Arts.
Fine art: Lindsey Mendick with broken bike at Bank Street Arts.
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BROKEN bike?

Lindsey Mendick will take it off your hands. Or a broken computer. Broken vase, broken cutlery, broken anything you’ve got.

Then she’ll fix it up and give it you back.

Just don’t expect it to work.

“Or even to look good,” says the 23-year-old of Pinner Road.

This is fine art for fine art’s sake as done by a fine art student.

She wants your busted goods so she can mend them like a toddler might do for her latest project.

Think a bike with a garden chair where the saddle should be, or a computer stuffed with foam where the electronics once were.

That’s art, folks.

Lindsey will take a picture of her work, pass it to her Sheffield Hallam tutor, and - splintered fingers crossed - get a first.

“There’s no point to it,” she says, stitching a ripped map together with sewing thread.

“When I’ve fixed the things they still don’t work and they don’t necessarily look good, but it does represent how once something is broken it can never be made to be the same again. It’s damaged somehow for ever.”

And it seems, here in South Yorkshire, we’re nothing, it seems, if not a damaged (and art-appreciating) bunch.

Because, since launching her appeal for thrashed, trashed and plain old smashed goods, Lindsey - all knee high socks and art school chops - has been inundated with broken bikes, monitors, cutlery, instruments, and a host of other items in need of some attention.

Now, down in her basement studio at Bank Street Arts, she’s concocting more original methods of mending.

Upstairs in the main gallery, meanwhile, already hangs a fleet of broken model aeroplanes fixed back together with wood and string and tape.

“That was how it all started,” says Lindsey, who is originally from London. “I went to Blackpool with my boyfriend and we played bingo and all we won was a model plane - and then even that broke.

“I was determined to fix it and I did, and that just reminded me of how when I was five I broke a china cat which belonged to my neighbours. I tried fixing it together with glue and tape and I was mortified when they still shouted at me. But I thought it looked great.”

Now, amid the sawing and the sticking, she’s planning an exhibition of the finished work that isn’t reclaimed.

“Almost everyone I’ve spoken to is fascinated by what I’m doing so I think the potential is there,” she says.

And then she’s off again. Saw in hand. Carving some wood to glue to a busted fork.

She’ll redeem herself for that broken china cat yet.

Send damaged items to Lindsey Mendick at Bank Street Art, Bank Street, Sheffield before Saturday.