The First Humans

The contemporary prehistoric

That Thing Inside The Thing Outside Of The Thing Inside Of This Thing (foreground) and What Do You Want More Of? by Jack Strange with (on left) works on paper by Vidya Gastaldon, photo at Pump House Gallery: Eoin Carey

Vidya Gastaldon, Fire and Emptiness Fight, work on paper

Island/Black Sun and works on paper by Salvatore Arancio, photo at PHG: Eoin Carey

ah-ah (bottom right) and work on paper by Salvatore Arancio, photo at PHG: Eoin Carey

Zibra by Caroline Achaintre, photo at PHG: Eoin Carey

Still from film, The Creation As We Saw It, by Ben Rivers

Andy Harper, The Threefold Law, seen from below, photo at PHG: Eoin Carey

At Plymouth Arts Centre, a locally found paleolithic hand-axe was added, photo: Dom Moore, ¬© Plymouth City Council (Arts and Heritage)

Artists: Caroline Achaintre, Salvatore Arancio, Vidya Gastaldon, Andy Harper, Ben Rivers, Jack Strange

The First Humans was commissioned by Ned McConnell and Helen Renwick at Pump House Gallery, London (Jan-March 2015), and toured to Plymouth Arts Centre (15 Jan-2 April 2016).

…it is a messy, indiscriminate wealth of time that flows throughout the exhibition, overlaying the contemporary with the historical. A time before time becomes a forever present; something we reach behind the scenes for, underneath, digging fingernails into the basal mess.
Hannah Newell, Art Selector

The First Humans is an exhibition with remarkable scope. 
Kimberley Chandler, 3rd Dimension

Mike Pitts, British Archaeology

Why is it artists are currently drawn to prehistory? Perhaps, as Jack Strange suggests, prehistory is interesting as a potential space ‘outside’ – that is nonetheless profoundly ‘inside’ and produced by the present.
Blog by archaeologist Helen Wickstead

Exhibition folder design by Tom Merrell, with a fold-out by Salvatore Arancio; archaeological diagram, questions and brief info (see below); notes on prehistory by Fiona Pitt; and an exhibition guide by Angela Kingston (see below).