Chella Man

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Chella Man
photo of Chella Man
Chella Man in January 2019
Born (1998-11-26) November 26, 1998 (age 22)[1]
NationalityChinese American
Occupation
  • YouTuber
  • actor
  • artist
  • activist
Years active2017-present
Websitewww.youtube.com/channel/UCa1vUXV2WMRobPo-ZfEeRhg

Chella Man (born November 26, 1998)[2] is an American YouTuber, actor, model, artist, and LGBTQ activist. He is known for sharing his experiences as a transgender, deaf, genderqueer, and Jewish person of color. Man rose to wider prominence in 2019 for portraying mute superhero Jericho in the second season of the DC Universe series Titans.[3]

Early life and education[edit]

Chella Man was born November 26, 1998, and is of Jewish and Chinese descent.[4] He was raised in a small town in Central Pennsylvania in a conservative community, where he "did not consider [himself] beautiful".[4] He was assigned female at birth and experienced gender dysphoria during childhood.

Man began to lose his hearing at four years old. By age thirteen, he was profoundly deaf, and the next year he received his first cochlear implant. At sixteen he had a second implant placed on his other ear.[5]

In 2017, after experiencing gender dysphoria throughout his childhood, Man began gender transitioning using testosterone.[6] His use of hormone replacement therapy (HRT),[7] along with top surgery, helped with his identity, self-esteem, and body image.[8]

Man is currently a student at The New School in Manhattan where he studies virtual reality programming.[4][9]

Career[edit]

In March 2017, he created his YouTube channel where he posted videos about his personal experiences with gender dysphoria, his identity, his love life, and American sign language translation videos to popular songs.[8][10] Man stated in an interview with Teen Vogue, "There is an extreme lack of representation for young, Deaf, queer, Jewish, Asian, transgender artists...So, I decided to be my own representation."[4] Man also posts videos that attempt to mobilize young voters and discuss the political effects of the Trump administration, whom he does not support.[4] Man began doing so after president Donald Trump visited his high school during his presidential campaign.[11]

In May 2018, Man presented his TedX Talk entitled "Becoming Him" in which he talks about his transition journey and gender issues for LGBTQ youth and people with disabilities.[12]

Man signed to IMG as their first deaf Jewish-Asian model in September 2018.[3][4][13] He has modeled for magazines including The Advocate, Bad Hombre, Time Out, Dazed, Gay Times and Mission,[14] and for brands including Calvin Klein, Gap, and American Eagle.[15][16][17][18][19]

In March 2019, it was announced that Man would make his acting debut as Jericho, a mute crime fighter, for the DC Universe’s digital series Titans in its second season.[3][20][10] Man stated that he connected to the character, who uses sign language to communicate. He discusses the importance of disabled actors playing disabled characters to support proper representation, stating, "Casting disabled actors/actresses for disabled roles will aid to authentically represent and deconstruct stereotypes built around our identities".[3][2] Man has discussed and worked alongside fellow disabilities activist Judith Heumann, and queer activist Jillian Mercado.[21][22]

In March 2021, Man appeared on Tamron Hall (talk show)[23], discussing his transition that went viral in 2017[24].

In June 2021, Man is a recently published author to Penguin Random House, his book, Continuum is the newest addition to the Pocket Change Collective.[25] Pocket Change Collective is a series focused on creating a space to discuss gender, sexuality, activism and intersectionality within the literary world.

Art[edit]

Man paints, designs tattoos, and has interest in fashion design.[4] [26] Man described how he finds inspiration as "pulled from anything I stumble upon that I find aesthetically pleasing. This could be a Picasso in the MoMA or a polka-dotted hat on the NY subway." [27]

Featured on his Youtube Channel, Man’s art publication is a 3-minute long visual performance, The Beauty of Being Deaf, promoting a jewelry collection that transforms hearing aids into ear jewelry. Man stated he created this jewelry collection as a way to introduce Deaf people into the fashion industry, as well as removing the stigma for wearing hearing aids and cochlear implants. He states, “Yet the appearance of hearing aids and cochlear implants have always created a disconnect. The pieces never felt like me, and I had no control over their designs. I always found myself brainstorming ways to reclaim the machinery that had become a part of me.”[28]

Personal life[edit]

Man communicates in English and American sign language and most closely identifies with the bicultural identity for deaf people.[29]

He is in a relationship with MaryV Benoit, an artist and photographer.[30]

Honors and awards[edit]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2019 Titans Jericho
2021 Trans in Trumpland Producer

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Chella Man on Instagram: "MaryV had me come home blindfolded last night. So, this morning when I woke up, the first thing I saw was these golden balloons above our…"". Instagram. Retrieved 21 April 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b "Trans, Deaf Artist Chella Man Cast as Superhero in DC's 'Titans'". www.out.com. 2019-03-19. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  3. ^ a b c d Yam, Kimberly (2019-03-22). "Deaf Transgender Actor Chella Man Talks Being Cast In 'Titans' As Jericho". HuffPost. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Nast, Condé. "Chella Man Is the First Deaf Transgender Model to Sign to IMG". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  5. ^ Nast, Condé. "Why I'm Proud to Be Deaf (And Queer) AF". them. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  6. ^ Nast, Condé. "I Documented My First Year on Testosterone, And It Changed My Life". them. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  7. ^ Newfield, Emily; Hart, Stacey; Dibble, Suzanne; Kohler, Lori (2006-06-07). "Female-to-male transgender quality of life". Quality of Life Research. 15 (9): 1447–1457. doi:10.1007/s11136-006-0002-3. ISSN 0962-9343. PMID 16758113.
  8. ^ a b Weinstock, Tish; Pressigny, Clementine de (2018-03-06). "this deaf, genderqueer artist documented his entire transition on youtube". I-D. Retrieved 2019-04-21.
  9. ^ Azoulay, Bonnie. "This Deaf Jewish-Asian Transgender Model Just Made History". The Forward. Retrieved 2019-10-10.
  10. ^ a b "18 Things to Know About Chella Man". Alma. 2019-07-18. Retrieved 2019-10-24.
  11. ^ "20-Year-Old Artist Chella Man Is the Face of A Movement". www.lofficielusa.com. Retrieved 2019-10-25.
  12. ^ Becoming Him | Chella Man | TEDxRanneySchool, retrieved 2019-10-25
  13. ^ Azoulay, Bonnie. "This Deaf Jewish-Asian Transgender Model Just Made History". The Forward. Retrieved 2019-10-10.
  14. ^ "Portfolio". IMG Models. Retrieved 2019-12-03.
  15. ^ Nast, Condé. "4 Queer Heroes Share Why Personal Style Matters". them. Retrieved 2019-12-03.
  16. ^ THIS IS CHELLA MAN IRL IN #MYCALVINS | CALVIN KLEIN, retrieved 2019-12-03
  17. ^ "Chella Man and Kimberly Drew Front GAP's Colorful Campaign". PAPER. 2018-08-01. Retrieved 2019-12-03.
  18. ^ Dazed (2019-05-13). "Queer model Chella Man is the multihyphenate to watch". Dazed. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
  19. ^ "Chella Man covers the 500th issue of Gay Times Magazine". GAY TIMES. 2019-09-27. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
  20. ^ Ellis, Philip (2019-03-20). "Deaf, Transgender Artist Chella Man Will Play Superhero Jericho in DC's 'Titans'". Men's Health. Retrieved 2019-10-10.
  21. ^ Chella Man: The Power of Community, retrieved 2021-04-09
  22. ^ "jillian mercado on Instagram: "I collaborated with @nycpride during Pride month to have open conversations with a few of my very good friends about being queer, call to…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
  23. ^ Ts Madison/Angelica Ross/Chella Man (Talk-Show), Tamron Hall, Ts Madison, Chella Man, Angelica Ross, 2021-03-16, retrieved 2021-04-09CS1 maint: others (link)
  24. ^ Chella Man Is Challenging Gender Roles & Encouraging Us to Be More Expansive, retrieved 2021-04-09
  25. ^ "Continuum by Chella Man; Illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky". Penguin Random House Canada. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
  26. ^ Cadogan, Dominic (2019-03-20). "Trans model and activist Chella Man cast to make acting debut". Dazed. Retrieved 2020-02-18.
  27. ^ Fisher, Remy (2017-07-31). "Meet Non-Conforming Artist Chella Man". Arts + Culture. Retrieved 2019-12-10.
  28. ^ The Beauty of Being Deaf, retrieved 2021-04-09
  29. ^ Chapman, Madeleine; Dammeyer, Jesper (2017). "The Relationship Between Cochlear Implants and Deaf Identity". American Annals of the Deaf. 162 (4): 319–332. doi:10.1353/aad.2017.0030. ISSN 1543-0375. PMID 29129834.
  30. ^ Ferber, Lawrence (2019-10-25). "Trans, Deaf "Titans" Star Chella Man Is the Craziest, Sexiest Superhero on TV". NewNowNext.com. Retrieved 2020-02-18.
  31. ^ "Prologue: The Death of Shorty", Why Don't American Cities Burn?, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012, pp. 1–18, doi:10.9783/9780812205206.1, ISBN 978-0-8122-0520-6
  32. ^ "Queerty". Queerty. Retrieved 2019-12-03.
  33. ^ Wallin, Zoë (2019-03-07), "The Girl Reporter Pictures", Classical Hollywood Film Cycles, Routledge, pp. 34–80, doi:10.4324/9780429244339-3, ISBN 978-0-429-24433-9

External links[edit]