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Perhaps every generation feels dwarfed by history. We stand in the shadows of a vast century. Utopias were built and fell harder than we could have ever imagined. Our collective identity is now shaped in part, by the knowledge that in certain horrorfilled circumstance any woman, man or child can kill another. This knowledge must become more than intellectual baggage, we must seize all of our creative effort to ensure that different circumstances are made. A dangerous falsehood has arisen, that every passionate action must be violent. This is not true. There is always more than one way to go when making choices and compassionate choices exist and can be made. Remember that war is not the only answer for mankind today. We must retain the passionate intent of the original military usage of the term avant-garde and lose the desire to harm or compete with others. Creating real solutions to real problems will be the result of behavioural experiments. If one experiment fails this does not prove that all others will also. So we must keep trying. A truly experimental stance would not describe a predetermined set of actions or aesthetic. It would instead aim to charter unknown territory. Cultural movements occur as individuals become over-exposed to powerful ideas. What seemed to “break the rules” and provide answers to begin with, becomes it’s own “rule” and dominator. Those last to wake up to it, apply the seductive idea in totality and dilute the initial vision in a way that further undermines it’s power. At this point those that pioneered the ideas must move onwards. We live in a time where art is constantly imagining its own context. This is a freedom, not a limitation. Whilst everything may not actually happen, something will. Everything is possible and this infinite possibility is something that must be explored. This can only begin with action. There are no rules, so we needn’t be concerned with breaking them. These actions must be more than idealistic hope. We must not passively wait for things to be ok. When I have ever spoken about Optimism, is it to describe the vital force that entangles itself with and then as action shapes the future.


OPTIMISM IS THE VITAL FORCE THAT ENTANGLES ITSELF WITH & THEN SHAPES THE FUTURE.”



Matthew Stone