Sacramento Art History Consortium’s Featured Artist: Daniel Mendoza

by Bree Garcia


DM: Mendoza is a visual artist and educator. He has worked and studied for two decades trying to create in one way or another, some form of art. At an early age music became the first of these art forms, and soon he found a passion for writing poetry, both moving him into the world of painting. Mixing various mediums to achieve versatility, he believes he has found an art form in which he feels in tune with raw creativity.

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 SAHC: Can you give us a brief description of your creative process? What is your preferred medium and style?

DM: I do my best to work in a creative process that has no limitations as far time or medium constraints. I don’t make paintings for the sake of selling them; I make them for the sake of the art itself. The last thing I think about is if I’m going to be able to sell the piece I’m working on, I’m just thinking about how far I can push the mediums and my ideas. I prefer to work in a mixture of acrylic and latex. I work in a layering process inspired by early Flemish and Netherlandish art, however unlike the work from that period mine is abstract or a mixture of both abstract and figurative work. Current I am working with a transfer process using my photography and creating mixed media pieces. The layer process can take several days, to several weeks, and even months. I will usually have about 5 to 7 pieces going at once in various stages.


SAHC:  As a Sacramento artist what responsibilities do you believe that you have to the local and the global community?

DM: As artists we take on several responsibilities within the community. We are advocates, as well as resources for the non profits, galleries, and museums. I think it’s important that you are a part of a community and as a whole the community is part of a global community. Creating work that gives back is just as important as creating work that is intended to sell.


SAHC: What advice do you have for emerging artists, or those pursuing a career in the arts?

DM: I would encourage diversification. If you are set on a career in the arts, look at your skills, your mediums and how you work. And see how you can apply those things to various areas on the arts community.  There is a wide variety of activities and organizations you can help out with. It would be great to just paint all day, but getting out and supporting what is going will help create a support for you as well.


SAHC: Who are some of your favorite Sacramento Artists, and why?

DM: Joy Bertinuson for her creativity and narrative, both of which are stellar! Kari Breese for the unique style and technique she creates with her work. Jill Allyn Stafford use of mediums and her activism make her one of my favorite Sacramento artists as well. And Felipe Davalos is a go to favorite of mine for the amount of information he can put into a single piece or his work, and his continued commitment to the Arts.

 SAHC: Where are some of your favorite Art/ Art History resources found?

DM: I’ve actually amassed my own collection of art and art history resources. Having traveled to various cities from New York to Mexico City I’ve been fortunate enough to visit a myriad of museums and collect data and photographs for my own personal resources. I also choose to obtain a degree in Art History as opposed to studio arts. I feel that having the knowledge and understanding of philosophies and creations of the great masters before us helps me better understand where I can take my work.

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SAHC: Is there anything else about the arts here in Sacramento that you would like share with our reader?

DM: I would just encourage readers to attend events in the area. There are more than just gallery showings or 2nd Saturday events. There are tons of education opportunities for adults and children in Sacramento that revolve around the arts. It’s a great community to be a part of.

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SAHC: Where can your work be viewed, or found online?

DM: My works shows up at various events and galleries around the city. But it can always be viewed at my website