Nicole Emilíana Mendez is a filmmaker and visual artist with a background in contemporary figurative painting. Born in Key West, Florida and moving many times as a child, she grew up with a love for people watching in ever changing environments. A survivor of childhood sexual trauma, her work focuses heavily on the emotions of young girls and their interactions with the world around them.
Mendez was pursuing her MFA in Painting when she took a film class and quickly felt she had found her place in the world. She recently directed her first short film, The Dress, and is in pre-production for an experimental documentary and video art piece that will be produced in conjunction with one another (Bad Child, scheduled for release Summer '22). She also freelances as a colorist when time permits.
Mendez has exhibited her artwork around the country. She has had work featured at the Oceanside Museum of Art, has been published in several local magazines throughout southern California, and has had her work discussed on KPBS’ Midday Edition. Her original paintings are in private collections throughout the United States, Canada, Sweden, Iceland, and Germany.
In 2016 Mendez was nominated for the San Diego Art Prize. She studied at Marylhurst University in Portland, Oregon after changing her major from mathematics to fine art and is currently pursuing her MFA in Film at San Diego State University.
Nicole lives in Southern California with her husband and three children.