‘And in the end ‘ Shia LaBeouf’s latest performance art project asks the big question
What you are left with, after this bizarre, almost boring experience, is perhaps what is most profound: your catalogue of thoughts that didnt make the cut
Its 10pm and Im standing towards the front of a 60-person queue in the underpass at the entrance to the Sydney Opera House. Flanked by snaking roped lanes, in anticipation perhaps of a much larger crowd, a quiet buzz rustles through the polite sprawl of mostly young 20-somethings, ranging from the diehards to the curious.
As part of BingeFest at the Sydney Opera House this weekend, performance art trio Shia LaBeouf, Sde Rnkk and Luke Turner are inviting visitors to deliver to the artists a message that begins with the words: And in the end
Between the hours of midnight and 6am, one by one, audience members enter the auditorium of the Joan Sutherland theatre and respond to this request in any way they see fit.
The two young women at the very front of the line have pink and blue fluoro hair and matching dresses printed with a pattern of LaBeoufs face. A little further along, a group of friends prepared for the long wait, sit on the concrete playing Uno. A quiet man behind me has arrived alone and looks a little nervous. He says he likes the Transformers movies but hasnt done anything like this before and couldnt get any of his friends to come with him. He scrolls down Instagram looking for inspirational quotes, hoping he can take his phone into the auditorium so he doesnt forget what he wants to say.
A 21-year-old from Texas, who helped film the trios previous project #takemeanywhere, has flown all the way to Sydney with his friend to say hi to LaBeouf, Rnkk and Turner. As we wait in the line, he shows me the Harambe memorial tattoo he just got emblazoned on his upper right knee and enthusiastically quips about the trios work, Its all about sincerity and making connections.
In this sense, the performance experience has already begun. Temporary friendships are struck through the common experience of waiting and thinking about a single proposition.
Ticking through everyones mind is a list of potential endings to the sentence And in the end Its a brilliant question, one that asks the thinker to reduce everything down to its essential elements and helps spur on the four hours of waiting in a meditative sort of haze.