"Turning to the term 'avant-garde' itself, it seems to have become a commonplace in our ways of thinking about art. Since the nineteenth century, its use has become widespread, designating any artistic movement that can be described as innovative. The term's fate is grounded in the relevance of its military metaphorics, which liken artistic invention to the actions of a small band of forces that sets off in advance of an army in order to clear its path. We thus strike upon several basic characteristics of the avant-garde: first, the notion that the avant-garde restores the collective dimension of explorative creativity. But the term also evokes the conditions of conflict that arise between this creativity and the prevailing society; at the same time, we must keep in mind that 'avant-garde' designates artistic activity as the means for opening up new territory.
The term's current problems arise from its social and economic valorization, which has become so important today that all artists want to be considered avant-garde—even though they generally consider the essential character of avant-gardism to involve little more than a spectacular revolution in form. The notion of avant-gardism subsequently takes on a different meaning than it had originally: it has come to signify a mindset of formal innovation, rather than a dedication to exploration and radical creativity that clashes with convention. Thus the positions of an entire range of so-called avant-gardes can be accommodated within an economic consensus that values formal innovation for reasons of competitiveness and profitability. At the same time, competitive rivalry leads to the disappearance of the collective dimension of innovative creativity which had been, no doubt, a fundamental characteristic of the avant-garde. We must therefore accept the idea that the very evolution of the avant-garde, which compels it to follow the trends of the market place, also brings about its death—a death to which the contemporary art market and institutional consensus alike seem fully determined have us bear witness by crowning its most ridiculous propositions with museum exhibitions. These preliminary remarks highlight the instability of terms such as 'avant-garde,' as far as artistic experience goes. For it is by no means clear that the term means the same thing for avant-garde of the first half of the twentieth century as it does for the avant-garde that followed."
(Philippe Sers and Jonathan P. Eburne, 2010, p.850)
The Radical Avant-Garde and the Contemporary Avant-Garde; Author(s): Philippe Sers and Jonathan P. Eburne; Source: New Literary History, Vol. 41, No. 4, What Is an Avant-Garde? (AUTUMN 2010), pp. 847-854. Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
English Google translation: "It would be an understatement to say the Prime Minister John Key was challenged today as he attended the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Ōrākau. Hundreds of Maori and Pakeha turned up to support the call to commemorate NZ Land Wars. Therein lies the strength of the challenge to the PM. The time has come for all of NZ, Maori and non–Maori alike, to be counted in honouring our nation's history. For a long time we have commemorated battles fought overseas. We need to start officially commemorating the ones fought in NZ. The PM appears indifferent. Mataatua descendants returned to the site of battle where their ancestors fought.
I'm excited to see so many people here today. Their ancestors came to this site to support the cause and their descendants have now come back today. Today, ancestors who fell in battle on this very site at Orakau 150 years ago were remembered. Ngati Raukawa, Ngati Maniapoto, Waikato, and all of Tainui are grateful to all iwi who have come to Orakau to share in this experience to commemorate all ancestors who died during the Battle of Orakau. The coming together of iwi.
They've been dubbed the 'Orakau 300'. and today it's Orakau 3000 who have arrived to remember their ancestors who died 150 years ago.
Secondary students from a local school have started a petition to make today an official day of remembrance. If the message hasn't sunk in for the PM, Mataatua and Tauranga iwi will remind him at Gate Pa at the end of this month. Potaka Maipi, Te Karere."
"I envisioned This Land Is Mine as the last scene of my potential–possible–maybe– feature film, Seder–Masochism, but it's the first (and so far only) scene I've animated. As the Bible says, 'So the last will be first, and the first will be last.'"
Fig.1 Nina Paley (2012) "This Land Is Mine".