In May 2022, Terrygold opened I Would, a further installation of art exploring personal themes of, life, love, and the passage of time. It is something of a third chapter in a series that started with Empty Chairs (see: Terrygold’s Empty Chairs: remembrance in Second Life) and then continued with Rain (see Terrygold’s Rain in Second Life), which – at the time of writing this article, at lease – is still open to visitors at Terrygold’s gallery, alongside I Would.
As with its predecessors, I Would takes visitor on a journey of two parts; one reflecting on childhood and the innocence carried within it; the other the increasingly harsh realities of life within a society which appears to be growing ever more isolationist, intolerant and selfish. These two parts are mirrored one to the other, but they are not reflections of one another; rather they are windows into different states of mind, linked by the presence of Terry, an adult woman who is both guide and voice of the artist’s – and our own – thoughts.
In the first part of the installation, we travel with Terry from her house and through a park; a place which, in childhood was never short of magical and where excitement and fun and release always awaited and where something might always be found to delight. A place where any little girl could be a princess and dream dreams of a future bright within happiness and light, and within which the realities of human nature were hidden – as least until seen through the weary eyes of adulthood.
In the second, we also start within Terry’s house, but on exiting, we pass onto a street of a modern town; a place dark, dreary and where anger gnashes teeth, and everything appears to be in a state of decay and uncaring selfishness. This is a street where anger is quick to boil over, and where those that have care little for the hardship of those who do not have, whilst being without is grounds to exude the right to threaten and to take.
All of this is evidenced in the words spoken in local chat by Terry as you come across her at various points in both scenes, and also through the words of other characters that might also be found, whilst mood is set by the framing of the scenes and the vignettes waiting within them.
Within the park, for example, we travel from Terry’s house through the bright colours and magical mysteries imagined by childhood eyes, to arrive back at Terry’s house as it sits in the harshness of winter – symbolic of the passage of time as we grow from the gaiety of childhood to the coldness of adult life. Meanwhile, in the street scene we find a subtle amplification between those who have, and those who do not: in a garden protected by a high fence, a little girl plays happily, utterly oblivious of the little girl down the street cut off from her enjoyment of the local swings thanks to the vandalism of others and the force erection of another, and altogether different, high fence.
Throughout both scenes the words of the character of Terry give us pause for thought and to question. Why is life like this? Why do we so readily give up on the magic and promise of childhood to settle so readily into the cynicism and cruelty of adult life? What is it about our natures and our societies that make it “easier” to live in anger, resentment, selfishness and disregard, rather than allowing ourselves a more positive and accepting outlook? We obviously cannot remain as innocent as when young – but can we not hold onto the dreams we have, share them, and made the world a better, brighter place by doing so?
Within each half of the installation are 2D images by Terrygold that offer further reflection and visual tapping of the words offered through the character of Terry. These images add a further layer to our interpretation of I Would as it offers a thought-provoking window into life and the questions we can silently ask of it, and consider the wishes we all have at some point whispered within the stillness of our own thoughts.
On arrival at the gallery landing point, use the teleport disk to visit I Would and the other installations.
- Terrygold Art Gallery (Peaceful Land, rated Adult)