MontserrART: Jason “Gazoo” Allen’s Black Sand Art

Words by Jesse Serwer—

It’s not often that we get to celebrate sparsely populated Montserrat on LargeUp, nor is it frequent that someone we know as a party-rocking MC turns out to be a talented visual artist. Well, Montserrat-born Jason “Gazoo” Allen, who can be found livening up NYC nightspots like Greenhouse as a house-music MC, specializes in art made from the black sand and soil abundant on his home island since the eruption of the Soufriere Hills volcano (a 1995 catastrophe which has since cut the country’s population in half). And damn, if he isn’t doing some pretty cool things.

Inspired during a visit home in 2011 to create art with black sand as a way of expressing his country’s rebirth and opportunities, Gazoo first exhibited his Black Sand creations at NYC’s Montserrat Society last summer. Starting tonight, his “Under the Tree” show will spruce up the walls at one of our favorite downtown NYC hangouts, Spur Tree Lounge. As Gazoo explains of the show, he set out “to create a vibe of 10 pieces I see under a tree while looking out of my window in the Caribbean.” See the flyer below for details on the opening, and check out some more of Gazoo’s Black Sand Art below, and at his website.