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Finding Solace and Connection in a Noisy World 

Artist Ben Sloat addresses the weight of capitalism in our society and makes space to slow down and contemplate.

By Jewish Arts Collaborative

Published May 7, 2024



This Curation is part of Be the Change.

Explore the full collection

Ben Sloat argues that one of the greatest injustices our population faces is that of extractive capitalism. 

“Too common in this country, we treat our population as an economy, and not as a society,” he claims.  

“As a result, singular human aspects, such as our opinions and our attention, are isolated and seen as profit centers for value extraction. The impact in our culture is one of alienation, disconnection, distraction, and overwhelm — the onslaught of constant noise is simply too much for a single human body to tolerate.” 

For this Be the Change tzedakah box, Ben invites you to pause; to take a step out of the overwhelming hustle and bustle of our capitalist-driven lives; and to contemplate place, history, and humanity. 

Ben provides a space of slower time and contemplation. With architectural components collected from Jewish sites in greater Boston and NYC — historical and regional contexts — this piece will offer content for long term consideration. Overall, his aim is to also connect with aspects that have defined the Jewish experience historically: engagement with critical thought, discourse, and philosophy. 

Get a sense of Ben’s work by checking out another one of his pieces, called “What the Farmer Saw”, where he uses images and material to convey layers of past, present, and future. It’s also a nod to his inspiration for the Be the Change box.  

What The Farmer Saw (Meinong, Taiwan)

What The Farmer Saw (Meinong, Taiwan)


“One must say Yes to life and embrace it whenever it is found — and it is found in terrible places; nevertheless, there it is. For nothing is fixed, forever and forever and forever, it is not fixed; the earth is always shifting, the light is always changing, the sea does not cease to grind down rock. Generations do not cease to be born, and we are responsible to them because we are the only witnesses they have. The sea rises, the light fails, lovers cling to each other, and children cling to us. The moment we cease to hold each other, the moment we break faith with one another, the sea engulfs us and the light goes out.” – James Baldwin 

Stay tuned as Ben’s vision comes to life in the form of his Be the Change tzedakah box, scheduled to go up in The Fenway this August


JArts’ mission is to curate, celebrate, and build community around the diverse world of Jewish arts, culture, and creative expression. Our vision is of a more connected, engaged, and tolerant world inspired by Jewish arts and culture.

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