As a nonbinary queer person growing up in Jackson, Tennessee, Bexx Chin used photography as more than just a creative outlet; it provided a means of escape from the world around them.
“When I was in middle school, I was really into taking pictures for platforms like Myspace. I had these grandiose ideas that just became more and more elaborate,” they say. “I began roping in my siblings and friends until it got to the point where I realized it meant something more to me than just internet clout.”
That passion would lead Chin to Nashville in 2013, where they studied photographic imaging and fine arts at the Art Institute of Tennessee. Chin’s experiences growing up in the South would play a prominent role in their graduating project, titled Cattywampus.
“Cattywampus was about documenting queer youth in the South and trying to capture the surreal Southern mystical aura within that,” Chin says. “I think there is a degree of rebelliousness about being openly queer in the South. It’s a very punk-rock thing to do.”
They found the “scruffiness” in the queer community appealing and wanted to honor it.