chapter  20
The last avant garde?
WithSarah Austin, Kath Duncan, Gerard Goggin, Lachlan MacDowall, Veronica Pardo, Eddie Paterson, Jax Jacki Brown, Morwenna Collett, Fiona Cook, Bree Hadley, Kate Hood, Jess Kapuscinski-Evans, Donna McDonald, Julie McNamara, Gaelle Mellis, Eva Sifis, Kate Sulan
Pages 12

This chapter explores 'disability aesthetics' not as a set of specific techniques, themes, or politics, but in order to position disability at the centre of 'future conceptions of what art is' and what it can be. It draws contributions from the Research in Action workshop and the research team to explore the idea of the last avant garde and artists' views on how disability intersects with creative innovation. The chapter seeks to engage in a reflexive and ongoing conversation in which artists with disability are invited to reflect upon their own views on aesthetic value and performance practice. It also implies that recognition of disability arts is like the 'last remaining' piece of a puzzle, the pinnacle of a longer social struggle for rights and acceptance. For a company composed of artists with and without disability, of which Rawcus is but one prominent Australian example, the notion of disability aesthetics and the last avant garde is particularly complicated.