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#OTGYpsi: Ypsilanti Man Publishes International Magazine Of Fine Art

Jan 13, 2021

Pizza Time
Credit Andrew Da Silva / U Magazine
Ypsilanti resident Christian Usera is publishing an international magazine featuring art and artists.  Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk to him about his unique background and his effort to bring attention to art and the work of artists of color and other marginalized groups in "U Magazine." 

Christian Usera was born in Washington, D.C. to a Puerto Rican father and Irish-American mother.  He attended New York University, where he graduated with an English Degree in 2004.  During his tenure at NYU, Usera studied under the tutelage of Caribbean Studies Professor Kamau Brathwaite. 

Brathwaite was a world renowned Bajan poet and author, who popularized the use of nation language. Professor Brathwaite urged Usera to draw pictures regarding his Puerto Rican heritage and present his drawings to the class.  After graduating, Usera was asked to come back to NYU twice to present his independently published work, "The Ones," an illustrated short story. 

In 2010, he was asked to take part in "Marassa 10," which was an event organized to celebrate African & Caribbean culture.  Usera went on to intern at several art galleries, where he developed his writing and artistic ability.

In 2020, Usera created "U Magazine," a publication dedicated to creating a space for artists of color and other marginalized groups.  He currently resides in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Resources:

Concentrate Ann Arbor

Sarah Rigg's Feature Article: Ypsi resident launches new quarterly art magazine spotlighting artists of color

U Magazine

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— Lisa Barry is the host of All Things Considered on WEMU. You can contact Lisa at 734.487.3363, on Twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her at lbarryma@emich.edu