Jacob Mendez

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Using a variety of media, including charcoal, pen and ink, colored pencil, and oil paint, I combine naturalistic figures with the occasional abstract element that disrupts the realism in my work. I consider myself a selfish artist. I can’t pinpoint exactly why I make art, as the reasons and the styles I choose are ever-changing, but I tend to follow what I want or feel like doing in the moment. I enjoy making art for the purpose of emotional release. It is mainly for self-satisfaction, with little to no influence from what others “want” or “would like” to see. Because my work is such a personal thing, a lot of my pieces convey a heavy, often lonely, feeling; yet they also convey a sense of intimacy that comes through the process of making. I like the end result of my process to be elusive, which draws me towards naturalistic depictions of my subjects. Something about the illusion that a naturalistic representation of a hand conveys intrigues me, and although I prefer to hide my process, I sometimes take interest in doing the opposite—presenting the process “on the stage” by pulling elements in and out of the work to create a clash on the surface. I do know that most of my process is impulsive and reflective; I use it as an outlet, whether as a means for self-reflection, reflection on society, or just art for art’s sake. Regardless of the motive, my practice is always driven by an erratic, usually untimely (though it can be argued that wanting to create is never untimely) impulse to create.


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