- the advance group in any field, especially in the visual, literary, or musical arts, whose works are characterized chiefly by unorthodox and experimental methods.
- of or relating to the experimental treatment of artistic, musical, or literary material.
- belonging to the avant-garde: an avant-garde composer.
- unorthodox or daring; radical.
Origin of avant-garde
Related Wordship, head, liberal, lead, progressive, beat, radical, vanguard, experimental, innovative, new, state-of-the-art, pioneering
Examples from the Web for avant-garde
From the refined attire at Lincoln Center to the avant-garde dress downtown, we spotted many of the big 2014 trends.New York Fashion Week's Style on the Streets
September 11, 2014
She veers towards the avant-garde, using metal-powder deformed silicone piercings as textural embellishment and digital printers.The New Queens of Haute Couture
January 27, 2014
It was definitely the heart of not just the American avant-garde but the leading edge of all Western art.Why Did Llewyn Davis’s Greenwich Village Disappear?
December 7, 2013
Symbolizing CSM as a “creativity birth place,” 1Granary took an avant-garde approach towards the creation to life.1Granary: The College Magazine Funded by Comme des Garçons
October 7, 2013
The staples of the avant-garde are in the fray: Issey Miyake, Maison Martin Margiela, Walter Van Beirendonck.Monsters of Fashion Exhibition Opens in Paris
February 20, 2013
The avant-garde of 500 regulars and 400 provincials, commanded by Lieut.-Col."Evacuation Day", 1783
Reading the avant-garde stuff of nowadays, usually the contrast is merely grotesque, still I keep finding parallels.The Trial of Callista Blake
She got possession of the kiln, as usual, and the ass was sent to graze on the green; but Mary was only the avant-garde.A History of the Gipsies
Unlike elsewhere in Eastern Europe, there has been no experimental or avant-garde theater in Bulgaria.Area Handbook for Bulgaria
Eugene K. Keefe, Violeta D. Baluyut, William Giloane, Anne K. Long, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole
- those artists, writers, musicians, etc, whose techniques and ideas are markedly experimental or in advance of those generally accepted
- of such artists, etc, their ideas, or techniques
- radical; daring
Word Origin and History for avant-garde
(also avant garde, avantgarde); French, literally "advance guard" (see avant + guard (n.)). Used in English 15c.-18c. in a literal, military sense; borrowed again 1910 as an artistic term for "pioneers or innovators of a particular period." Also used around the same time in communist and anarchist publications. As an adjective, by 1925.
The avant-garde générale, avant-garde stratégique, or avant-garde d'armée is a strong force (one, two, or three army corps) pushed out a day's march to the front, immediately behind the cavalry screen. Its mission is, vigorously to engage the enemy wherever he is found, and, by binding him, to ensure liberty of action in time and space for the main army. ["Sadowa," Gen. Henri Bonnal, transl. C.F. Atkinson, 1907]