Brian Trimboli's poems from the series The First Ape follow a tradition of poetry, literature, and film concerned with the origins of the human race. Works of this kind by contemporary authors tend towards a few significant problem areas. First, the artist can venture into the territory of the didactic. "THIS IS WHERE ORIGINAL SIN CAME FROM," or, "THIS IS WHO WE HAVE TO THANK FOR GRANTING US THE CAPABILITY TO WILL FIRE." Second, the problem of overused or reiterated a myth can become a cliché. Its value (like the cliché) is in borrowing from symbol, shared narrative, gesture, and archetype in order to give a megaphone to the otherwise unspeakable but true. Myths are a part of every significant poet's work to some degree, so much of the value is in the artistic treatment of the same old story. The third problem is that the artist's treatment of this fuzzy pre-history runs into the obscure. Perhaps it suffices to say that because the idea of our race's pre-history is too immense, the compulsion to resort to the understatement of symbol, image, or archetype is expected.
"For the coolness of these paintings is not a matter of technique or cognition but a mapping of the erosion of feeling—its sediments and strata. The poignancy of these images, entirely at odds with their scale and abstraction, evokes a world that is captive yet resistant to the historical world: a world that summons in the viewer something like the mysterious affect and the irretrievable motives of one under enchantment, one controlled from afar."