The term avant-garde refers to innovative or experimental concepts or works, or the group of people producing them. Pushing boundaries with his development of Cubism, Pablo Picasso was part of the early 20th-century art world’s avant-garde.
In French, avant-garde means the “vanguard” or the “advance guard” — basically the people and ideas that are ahead of their time. Usually it refers to a movement in the arts, like Dadaism, or in politics, like anarchism. Avant-garde can also be used as an adjective to describe something that’s cutting-edge. You might have enjoyed that avant-garde dance piece in which the performers threw marshmallows at each other, even though it was confusing at times.