Left: Jess Wheelock and Catherine McMahon. Be Yourself, 2011. Right: Animation playing inside of Dale’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People, 2010.
Jess Wheelock is a multimedia artist currently based in San Francisco. She received her MFA at MIT in the inaugural year of the Program in Art, Culture and Technology. For “Making Dollars”, Wheelock presents her animation and sculpture series entitled How to Win Friends and Influence People (2010-12). The series takes its name from the seminal people-skills book by Dale Carnegie, which was first published in 1937 and remains a classic in organizational behavior and management classes today. Taking inspiration from Carnegie’s texts, Wheelock created a hand-drawn animation in which she (playing herself) takes the author as her mentor. With Dale Carnegie: The Man Who Influenced Millions (2010-11), Wheelock and Catherine McMahon (PhD Candidate, History, Theory and Criticism of Architecture and Art, MIT) collaborated on a series of photographs that are named after chapters in the eponymous biography. An extended conversation between the artists can be found here. These works will be exhibited together for the first time in “Making Dollars”.
“…doing a piece about a self-help book seemed like an opportunity to me. It gave me a clear antagonist to struggle against.”