Art Basel: Love Focused Like A Laser

Last night, the pool inside the garden of Miami’s The Shore Club was transformed into a glowing stage for artist Matthew Stone’s enigmatic performance piece Love Focused Like A Laser Beam. The “hybrid opera," presented by The Hole for Art Basel, brought together some of the art and fashion world’s most eccentric names and faces.

Through a cloud of smoke, Andre J broke through the crowd’s anticipatory silence with the declaration that “God is here.” Behind him, dancers choreographed by Madeline Hollander contorted themselves into twisted shapes, their mouths forced open in teeth-baring frowns by plastic bondage apparel.

Matthew Stone took the stage in a dizzying display of a man gripped in a power struggle with himself. He spouted semi-incoherent testimonies at the audience as he flung himself writhing and reeling from one end of the stage to the other. He read his monologue from a messy stack of papers that finally went flying into the air as he toppled into the pool.

While all of this was taking place, singer Kelela sat stage right, coaxing a seemingly dead Boy Child back to life with her melodic singing which floated above music by Zebra Katz. For the performance, Stone worked with music director L-Vis 1990. Designers Hood By Air outfitted many of the performers in clothing that we had seen earlier this year on the runway during Made Fashion Week.

While many performance art pieces fall short of entertaining their audiences and their messages are a bit lackluster in spite of themselves, Love Focused Like A Laser captivated the onlookers who supported Stone and his creative collective of ambiguous eccentrics. Their attention and support for the audience help to solidify the deeper message behind the art piece: “Love changes everything.”

Photos By: Kalvin Lazarte

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