Roz Chast: Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?

June 22 - September 24, 2018

My cartoons tell the story of things that have happened in my life.  —Roz Chast

This exhibit consists of 139 original illustrations from Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, a graphic memoir by The New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast.

Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? has garnered acclaim for its grimly funny and deeply poignant examination of end-of-life issues as she experienced them with her elderly parents. Dedicated professional educators before their retirement, Elizabeth and George Chast were temperamentally dissimilar but intensely devoted to one another. The artist’s poignant tale, punctuated by moments of hilarity, traces their physical and cognitive decline, from “The Beginning of the End” to “The End,” examining the complexities of her relationship with them through the years.

A 2014 National Book Award Finalist for Non-Fiction, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? is also the winner of the prestigious National Book Critics’ Circle Award for Autobiography and the Kirkus Prize for Non-Fiction. The book, and Chast’s artistic contributions, were recognized in 2015 with a Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities. Of the effort, Chast notes that, “I didn’t want to forget how they talked and I didn’t want to forget how they were…. Some of the stories that emerged were hilarious, but also heartbreaking, and they became a record of my experience with them. To know that others felt the book meant something to them—I’m very happy about that.”

This exhibit is part of Roz Chast: Cartoon Memoirs, organized by the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.


Photo Gallery


August 11, Saturday, 7:30 p.m. – Artist Talk: Roz Chast