This huge, colorful canvas sits on the corner of Kent and Metropolitan in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Busy and weathered, its conditions contrast the sterile high-rises looming nearby. After some online digging, I learned the building was once a spice factory and a creative commune (as of 1994). Christened Monster Island, it offered low-cost studios, rehearsal rooms, gallery and print space to local artists for 17 years. It also hosted D.I.Y. concerts, parties, rallies and gatherings until its landlord decided to (try to) redevelop the block. It closed for good in September 2011. Today, the artist collective is a fossil of what Williamsburg once was; before gentrification literally changed the landscape of the waterfront neighborhood.