ARTLIFE: WHY I LEFT THE BAY #3, $5, 8½” x 5½”, printed, 32 pgs.

Jan 26, 2021

Personal disclaimer: I know Nia King and consider her a friend. Reading this third issue of her zine ArtLife, I half expected to be in it. (I wasn’t.) And although I wasn’t, I was a participant in some of the events she describes in this perzine on her decision to leave Oakland, Calif., after ten years. Knowing Nia, I was already aware of a few of her reasons for leaving the Bay Area (shitty landlord, dead-end job, professional unfulfillment), but I was not fully aware of what she was going through at the time. In a chronological series of diary excerpts, Nia intimately details the particular highs and lows that led her to leave the place that she loves and start a new life in Philadelphia, Pa. I had no idea her lows were so low (a persistent theme is loneliness), and I wonder what I could’ve done—if anything—as a friend during those times. ArtLife 3: Why I Left the Bay is a deeply honest and pure tribute to a chosen hometown, communities found and lost, and new beginnings. –Gina Murrell (