He graduated in history from the Universidade Estadual Paulista (Unesp) and has a degree in cinema from the USP. Mendes has extensive experience as a curator and historian, with emphasis on film history and audiovisual heritage. He was a researcher at Cinemateca Brasileira, where he made curatorship, editing and restoration work. He directed the short film Eu Posso Ir and was responsible for organizing the book Ruy Guerra - Arte e Revolução. At the 44th Mostra, he taught, alongside Ruy Guerra, the online course The Work of Ruy Guerra. The following year, he directed the full-lenght documentary Tempo Ruy (2021, 45th Mostra).