New Yorker Cartoonist and
author of Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?
Cartoonist Roz Chast is a brilliant interpreter of the everyday. Her cartoons depict neuroses, hilarity, angst and domesticity and are loaded with words, objects and patterns. More than 1000 of them have been printed in The New Yorker since 1978.
Since then, nine collections have been published of Chast's work, most recently, Theories of Everything, a twenty-five year retrospective. Roz Chast is known for her cast of recurring characters - generally hapless but relatively cheerful “everyfolk.” In her cartoons, she addresses the issues of our time: guilt, anxiety, aging, families, friends, money, real estate, and as she would say, "much, much more!" The editor of The New Yorker, David Remnick, has called her “the magazine's only certifiable genius.” She recently collaborated with Steve Martin on the children's book The Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter Z! published by Random House. Her children's book, Too Busy Marco, was published by Simon & Schuster and released in the Fall of 2010. The sequel, Marco Goes to School was released in 2012. Her book for adults, What I Hate: From A – Z was published by Bloomsbury in October 2011. She also illustrated a book with songwriter Stephen Merritt called 101 Two-Letter Words published in Fall 2014. Her newest book for adults is Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?, a book that chronicles her relationship with her aging parents as they shift from independence to dependence. Using handwritten text, drawings, photographs, and her keen eye for the foibles that make us human, Chast addresses the realities of what it is to get old in America today – and what it is to have aging parents today -- with tenderness and candor, and a good dose of her characteristic wit. Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant? is a New York Times 2014 Best Book of the Year, 2014 National Book Award Finalist, winner of the 2014 Kirkus Prize, and a winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for the best books of 2014. For the first time in National Book Critics Circle Award history, a graphic novel won the prize for autobiography. Chast's newest book for children is titled Around the Clock (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, January 13, 2015).
Chast grew up in Brooklyn. She received a BFA in 1977 from Rhode Island School of Design with studies in graphic design and painting, but returned to the cartooning which she had begun in high school. Less than two years out of college, she was added to the forty or so artists under contract to The New Yorker which has continually published her work for 33 years, from black and white cartoons to color spreads, back pages and covers. In addition she has provided cartoons and editorial illustrations for almost fifty magazines and journals from Mother Jones to Town & Country. She has illustrated several children's books and contributed to many humor collections, lectured widely and received several prestigious awards including honorary degrees from Pratt Institute and the Art Institute of Boston. In 2013 she was inducted as a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2015 she was awarded the Heinz Award. Roz Chast lives in Connecticut with her family and several parrots.
"The wacky world Roz Chast has created in her cartoons is a parallel universe to ours, utterly recognizable in all its banalities and weirdnesses, but slightly askew..."Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"[Roz Chast has] the wryest pen since Dorothy Parker's."O Magazine