Banner image: 'Leftover from the Void', 2018 - ongoing

Website: benjacknash.com

Affiliation with Shape: Exhibitor at Shape Open (2014)

Artist Statement

Artist Ben Jack Nash is best known for his ghostly sculptures and installations that remove the cause to leave behind their effect – a shaft of light with no source, a shadow without its object or a blowing curtain with no wind. Often appearing integrated with their surroundings or displaced from somewhere else, he uses familiar architectural thresholds such as doors, windows or blinds.  He asks us to reject the distracting idea of individual separate entities in favour of a world of infinite overlaps that migrate stealthily from state to state. He applies this to our physical environment but also to social contexts such as art and culture.

He says that art is ‘ the subconscious of society that starts in the outer world, makes its way into someone’s inner world then is spat out to make up part of our outer world again. It is simply not possible or desirable to identify precisely where or when these worlds silently collide, only that we can deduce they are there’.

Current Projects 

'Leftover from the Void'. 2-30 September 2018. 

La synagogue de Reichshoffen, 1 Rue de la Synagogue, 67110, Reichshoffen, Bas-Rhin.

In this project, Ben Jack Nash exhibits a unique contemporary art installation at the Reichshoffen synagogue in the Alsatian countryside, France. Built in 1851, the synagogue's outside is still peppered with machine gun fire and the inside’s stylish decor is still present, manufactured by a famous metalworks company who also made cattle wagons of the sort later used for deportations to concentration camps. It has been closed for 50 years but now re-opens to the public. 




click on image to play film

The artwork contains more than 25 elements made across France, the UK and India over a period of ten months. It interacts in particular with the synagogue’s remarkable Moorish inspired stained glass windows. Down one side of the building, the artist recreates their colourful sunlit reflections to appear as though cast naturally on the floor but without using projectors. They fade and grow imitating the passing of a fleeting cloud. At any given moment mediators intervene. They place shutters over the windows but the reflections remain unaffected. He also interacts with the building’s original relics, removing them from their plinths whilst their shadows remain in situ.

Through sculpture and choreography, he controls and transforms the space to recreate a place of reflection but also of timelessness and wonderment. He hopes the work will help reconnect the building with the local population who are mostly completely unaware of its existence.

'Leftover from the Void' (2018)

Read our conversation from 2014 with Ben Jack Nash here 


Images and film: Nathan Johnson

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