2 Answers

  1. In addition to the above, it should be noted that the concept of “avant-garde” has a completely modern sound. Until recently, Yuri Lyubimiy's performances at the Taganka Theater were considered avant-garde, and today Kirill Serebrenikov's productions at the Gogol Center are also called avant-garde. There are avant-garde books, films, and paintings…even youth hairstyles and ultra-fashionable clothes are also called avant-garde. In general, everything that is one step ahead of the mainstream is an avant-garde!

  2. First, chronologically, modernism preceded the avant-garde. The avant-garde is a product of the revolutionary era of the early twentieth century, while modernism emerged at the end of the nineteenth. Secondly, you should pay attention to the origin of the term: “vanguard” was traditionally called the first ranks of the army; to be “in the vanguard” means to be ahead of everyone, and in a risky, combat situation. The term, as you can see, is taken from the military vocabulary. And for good reason. The utopian goal-the radical transformation of human consciousness by means of art-is inherited by the avant-garde from modernism; however, the avant-gardists went further, suggesting that it is possible to reconstruct not only consciousness, but also society through art. Finally, if modernism was primarily an aesthetic revolt, a revolution within art, not against tradition itself, but within it, then the avant-garde is a revolt against artistic tradition itself, as indeed against all traditions. “Modernism, as it were, accepts the basic values of traditional art, but is engaged in updating artistic means while solving the so-called eternal tasks of art. In this sense, it is the same traditional art, but taken up with a new language to describe the same thing. Avant-gardism is constantly creating other art, updating not its means, but the object of art itself. Moreover. The avant-garde implies an active social position of the artist, which before, by and large, was out of the question. While revolutionary in nature, the avant-garde tends to be combined with radical political beliefs; for example, it is common knowledge that many Surrealists were communists. And the Russian vanguard, as we know, went in orderly ranks to serve the cause of the October Revolution.”

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