Rebeca Méndez was born in México City in 1962. She received her BFA (1984) and MFA (1996) from Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA.
Méndez’s art practice is in various media—photography, 16mm film, video, and installation—with which she explores the nature of perception and media representation, specifically how cultures express themselves through the style of nature that they produce at a given time and the medium through which they construct this nature. She moves through different scales with ease—from photographic prints, to immersive sound and video installations, to murals of more than 25,000 square feet, to installations involving sixty-foot boulders and tons of lava rock. She considers the journey as a medium in itself and has produced a significant body of work based on travels to unfamiliar and extreme places such as Iceland, Patagonia, Svalbard archipelago in the high arctic, and the Sahara, where she is awakened to a heightened level of perception.
Méndez was the 2012 recipient of the National Design Award bestowed by The White House and the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. Méndez was awarded the 2010 California Community Foundation Mid Career Fellowship for Visual Artist. She taught at Art Center College of Design and is currently a professor at the University of California in Los Angeles.