Black Market International (BMI) was founded in 1985 with founding members including Boris Nieslony, Tomas Ruller, Norbert Klassen, Zbigniew Warpechowski and Jürgen Fritz.
Over 20 years the group has presented its unique, durational performances throughout the world in a range of venues and locations. The group currently consists of twelve regular members: Norbert Klassen (CH), Helge Meyer (D), Alastair MacLennan (UK), Boris Nieslony (D), Jacques Maria van Poppel (NL), Elvira Santamaria (MEX), Marco Teubner (D), Julie Andree T. (CA), Roi Vaara (FIN), Lee Wen (SEN), Miriam Laplante (I), Jürgen Fritz (D).

An important element of BMI is that each member has an established and independent practice as a solo performance artist. BMI is not concerned with the formation of group identity but acts as a platform that allows individual performance artists to encounter each other. The title 'Black Market' does not designate a group, but rather an idea of working.

The performances of BMI are exercises in derision, concentration, sacralisation and effacement. The performer tries to take life seriously while revealing that it is, in fact, worth very little - that it is held in a gesture, that it lasts only a moment. The work of BMI is to create these fundamental moments.

BMI is also the art of encounter. There is never a common theme; the work is made according to a principle of open cooperation. Each performance must create a singular time-space complex, exhuming the structure of encounter so that we may regain possession of space and draw the invisible links that constitute it.

This liveartwork editions DVD features a 90 minute video documenting the BMI performance at Les Halles, making the DVD one of the most extensive documentations of a recent BMI performance.

The DVD also includes a unique 35 minute lecture written in 2005 by Jürgen Fritz. It gives an overview of BMI's work from 1985 to 2005 and explores some of central elements of approach to performance.

Please note: a 20 minute version of this same video documentation appears on issue 3 of liveartwork DVD. The material on this DVD is a much more extended, 90 minute documentation of the performance.

Publicaton Details:

Video duration: 90mins.
Original performance duration: 6hrs.
The video contains a very small amount of text spoken in various languages.
Published on a DVD-R disk in PAL or NTSC format.
Published June 2007 by liveartwork.

Camera by Christopher Hewitt & Nael Khleifi
Editing and DVD prodcution by Christopher Hewitt
Lecture written and edited by Jürgen Fritz
Voice over by Kattrin Weber-Krüger

Black Market International
Boris Nieslony

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