Since joining The New Yorker in 1978, Roz Chast has established herself as one of our greatest artistic chroniclers of the anxieties, superstitions, furies, insecurities, and surreal imaginings of modern life. Her works are typically populated by hapless but relatively cheerful "everyfolk,” and she addresses the universal topics of guilt, aging, families, money, real estate, and, as she would say, "much, much more!" David Remnick, the editor of The New Yorker, has called her "the magazine's only certifiable genius."
Chast is the author of Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?, a work 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. The National Endowment for the Arts chose Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant? for the 2018 and 2022 Big Read programs.
Her other books for adults include What I Hate: From A to Z, The Party After You Left, and Going Into Town: A Love Letter to New York, winner of the New York City Book Award and a Washington Post 10 Best Graphic Novels of the Year. Her newest book I Must Be Dreaming is a New York Times bestseller, a USA Today bestseller, a New Yorker Best Book of the Year, a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice, a Washington Post Best Graphic Book of the Year, and received a ‘star’ review from Publishers Weekly.
Roz Chast is also the author of books for children, including Around the Clock, Too Busy Marco, and Marco Goes to School. Chast has collaborated with Calvin Trillin on No Fair! No Fair! And Other Jolly Poems of Childhood, Erin McKean and Danny Shanahan on Totally Weird and Wonderful Words, Daniel Menaker on The African Svelte: Ingenious Misspellings that Make Surprising Sense, Steve Martin on The Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter Z!, Carl Hiaasen on Assume the Worst, and with Patty Marx on You Can Only Yell at Me for One Thing at a Time, Why Don’t You Write My Eulogy Now So I Can Correct It?, and Tired Town which received a ‘star’ review from Kirkus. In addition, Chast was guest editor for The Best American Comics 2016.
Roz Chast grew up in Brooklyn, NY and received a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design with studies in graphic design and painting, though she soon after returned to her love of cartooning. Fewer than two years out of college, at age 24, The New Yorker magazine added her to their roster of approximately forty artists under contract, and the publication has published her work continuously ever since. Chast has also provided cartoons and editorial illustrations for nearly 50 magazines and journals from Mother Jones to Town & Country. She lectures widely and has received numerous prestigious awards including honorary degrees from Pratt Institute and the Art Institute of Boston. Chast has received the Reuben Award, the Heinz Award, and the Visionary Woman Award. In addition, she has been inducted into the Society of Illustrator's Hall of Fame, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Roz Chast lives in Connecticut with her family and several parrots.
Photo Bill Hayes