(b 1955Germany. Lives and works in London)
Since 2001 Mendes has been making paintings based on obituaries and political stories. His interest-cum-obsession began with his own political awakening, sparked by the events of 9/11 and the so-called ‘War on Terror’.
More recent paintings are borne out of preparatory studies formed from the obituaries of other artists, which include re-making and appropriating their self-portraits and taking recent newspaper clippings that are transposed onto images of long dead artists such as Rembrandt and Van Gogh to form over-painted collages. This cryptic and seemingly bogus translation takes the subjects out of the context of mass media, and back into the realm of ‘fine art’.