Lexi Brown, photographer on autism spectrum, embraces beauty of being neurodivergent

Friday, December 1, 2023
Photographer with autism embraces beauty of being neurodivergent
Sandy Kenyon has more on the art of photographer Lexi Brown.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- What makes Lexi Brown unique is the way she has chosen to use what others might see as limitations to set herself apart as an artist. Look closely at her pictures and you might even start to see the world in a different way -- thanks to her unique vision.

Brown spends her time abroad in the world with her camera, shooting old-fashioned film as opposed to the digital photography most common today.

"I realize that film correlates so much more with what I see with my own eyes. It literally looks exactly how my brain sees it," Brown said.

Her brain views the world differently than most people. Brown says she was officially diagnosed with autism on Valentine's Day this year.

A challenge? Yes, but one that came with certain benefits.

"It gave me the permission slip to be different and unapologetic," she said.

Like others on the autism spectrum, Brown is very sensitive to light - which is an advantage because she says "photography is literally painting with light."

Brown has been taking photos since she was in the eighth grade, when she won a national prize for one photo taken on her mom's iPhone. It was autism that convinced her to make a living as an artist.

"Being on the spectrum, my internal world is very, very rich, and there's always so much happening in here with light and sound and motion, and like dissecting these little details of the world around me," she said.

In the details, Brown finds the divine, and says the neurodivergent brain is so beautiful because it can see all these different parts.

When asked if her diagnosis has helped her become a better photographer, Brown says she wouldn't call it 'better,' but rather different.

"I think being on the spectrum and spending a lot of time feeling misunderstood has given me a gift to help other people understand," she said.

Her gift allows people to see the world through her eyes and that broadens our understanding of life.

Lexi Brown is a star of tomorrow.

ALSO READ | Harlem Stage celebrates 4 decades of lifting creative voices of artists of color

Sandy Kenyon has more on Harlem Stage as the arts center celebrates its 40th anniversary.


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