*In process of stocking* Signa
is a Copenhagen based artistic collective founded by Signa & Arthur Köstler
. Developed since 2001 from performances by Signa Sørensen
(now Köstler), the fundamental concept of their projects is best described as performance installation. Each project is a devised site-specific performance played in non-traditional art spaces. In collaboration with an ensemble of international participants, the founding members of Signa conceptualize and perform in wholly immersive endurance installations which engage with archetype, improvisation and highly curated visual landscapes, to indulge and investigate structures of power and degradation, fate, identity and desire.
The length of Signa's performances range from 6 hours to 250 hours non-stop. The extreme duration of the work allows the improvisations to develop complex and intricately detailed stories, as well as provide ample time for audience members to acclimate to, and become insinuated in, the machinations of the world being portrayed. With rare exception, there is no physical boundary between performer and audience in Signa performances. The audience is invited to engage with the project as an individual might in daily life- absorbing all visual, aural, and tactile cues in the environment.
The recordings on this publication stem from the 2019 performance Det Åbne Hjerte (The Open Heart) and were selected and edited by Daniel Löwenbrück from hours and hours of sound from the (covert) video-documentation of the performance. The 12-hour performance (from 7pm to 7am) Det Åbne Hjerte featured a cast of more then 50 Danish and international performers, and explored the pendulum swings of power in the borderland between compassion and complacency.
60 people per evening were invited for a "seminar in empathy" run by the fictional association The Open Heart, founded by "The Compassionates" - these are individuals who accommodate and study human beings surviving on the fringes of society, known as "The Sufferers”. As a seminar participant, each audience member was assigned a bed, a locker, and a personal mentor from the ranks of "The Sufferers", respectively. During the performance, the audience adopted their mentor's name and clothes and experienced their world from inside their embodied experience.