"Collage, combined with painting, is one of Albuquerque Mendes’ preferred media when experimenting with the meanings implicit in images. In this work the artist uses cut outs from a 1950s American crime magazine and from a 1980s brochure of Porto’s Marques e Soares department store. Juxtaposed and set against a desolate urban architecture, the figures depicted convey different messages from those that might have been originally intended: the policeman’s bonhomie is suspicious and the models in pyjamas resemble criminal suspects photographed by the authorities. A Portuguese commemorative stamp, glued to the lower part of the canvas, alludes to the transmission of ideas that the painting promotes between the artist, the author, and the viewer. The old frame, which was restored and painted by Mendes, encompasses the painting giving it an object like condition.
Albuquerque Mendes has been producing work since the early 1970s. His work includes painting, performance, happenings and installation. Mendes explore themes from pop culture, folk tradition, religious forms and rituals as well as the social-historical conditions for the circulation, legitimizing and reception of the artwork. His painting, which often includes collage, reflects the appropriation and quotation of styles and iconography that marked art from the 1980s onwards. By appropriating the manner of renowned painters, such as Picasso, Arnulf Rainer, Max Ernst, Salvador Dalí, the paintings of Albuquerque Mendes exemplify the shunning of a personal style that defined much of the art produced at the time. Indeed, by applying a post-modernist logic of deconstruction with hints of neo-Dadaism and surrealism, his oeuvre showcases a substantial part of the history and art history of the twentieth century."