Citizens of Nowhere is an exhibition of new paintings at Studio One Gallery by Margate based painter Twinkle Troughton.
Often inspired by fables, Twinkle’s current focus is on The Lonely Wolf by Janos Pilinszky. A post WW2 poet, Pilinszky spent a substantial amount of his life in concentration camps, and went on to write a small but poignant body of work inspired by what he experienced.
For Twinkle, The Lonely Wolf is a haunting portrayal of a refugee, isolated and misunderstood, baring great resemblance to treatment of refugees in recent years. Fear of the other has always plagued humanity, and now, in an era of Trump and Brexit we are experiencing a huge outbreak, creating isolation, division and chaos all around the world. It is in this world that Twinkle sees the wolf attempting to navigate a path to safety, travelling over vast lands which are marred with paranoia and isolation as drawbridges are pulled up.
Primarily using oils on paper, Twinkle’s paintings explore a fragmented society. By combining oil paints with mediums that by their very nature oppose each other, painted layers distort and separate. Strange fictional landscapes are pulled out of the random markings by the inclusion of detail such as houses, boats and trees. Clusters of tents, lifebuoys and other items alluding to the plight of the refugee can often be found.
Here influence also lies with the works of Chinese artists such as Quo Xi (1020–1090) and Zhang Daqian (1899-1983) whose landscapes are monumental and limitless, allowing for the eye to travel over vast lands, and for the mind to imagine even further beyond.
Sometimes in the earlier stages the paintings are ripped up in to smaller pieces, fragmenting the image further. These surreal yet familiar landscapes with echoes of suburbia are not dissimilar to a setting for a fairytale, within which pockets of colour and light are often included, conveying hope in our beautiful but confused world.