Mendel's creative process originates from the deconstruction of the gaze. She starts with a dis-formation of all the elements and parts visible to the eye, dismantling them to their particles – the line or single spot. Mendel refrains from addressing the composition as a whole and is drawn instead into its numerous parts, exploring these disintegrating elements as if they were autonomic and independent.
As part of this deconstruction and the subsequent reconstruction, Mendel has found herself thematically exploring the broad consequences that daily objects have on our lives: consumer culture, excess and waste, and even contempt. These objects make her feel distant and enchanted at the same time. In contrary to the attributes that plastic bottles, bags, waste, food residues etc., have in our lives, in her paintings they become, enigmatic and powerful hybrids, completely independent from the original object being documented.
The life span of a still life is short, that is why it was called "Nature Morte" in Italian – dead nature. On the other hand, the longevity of the gaze, especially the artistic one, is significantly longer. This conflict, between the visibility of the objects on the canvas and their transient nature inherent to their functionality in life, is the driving force behind Mendel's work.
In many of her works, she examine this conflict by closing in on the object or painting its reflection. Dealing with this reflection brings to light various laws of materiality related to the reflective properties of the object – encouraging her to choose objects that contain the dynamic energy of fracturing wholes.
In this early stage of the process, Mendel is the "director": choosing a subject, an angle, a frame, plotting her tenor and my thematic goals. Next, she becomes the "laborer": reconstructing the elements that she previously dismantled, in order to create a new whole on the canvas. Mendel work for months on each painting, thus allowing every fragment of it to receive an "independent" pictorial treatment as if it was a complete whole on to itself. The harmony of the shapes, colors, abstract connections and fragmented nature of the objects are visible at first glance, but are somewhat elusive. The eye perceives the painting as a homogeneous whole, only delving into its different segments in the second gaze. The distanced gaze at her works displays the complete composition, while the closer one (which is hardly impossible on the computer screen) reveals an almost abstract painting.
It is actually this "casual", surface-driven gaze that Mendel wishes to use in order to deepen and refine the painting's message. Like the process that her own conscious undergoes, she aspires to have the spectator's gaze shattered into numerous pieces that will eventually reconnect to form a freshly integral whole.