The Ballad of Ivor Jones is a project created by myself and Michele Woodey. We collaborate as Found&Lost. Michele is based in Canada and I am here in Wales. Our physical separation and the ocean between us fundamentally informs and saturates our visual work.
Whilst looking for narratives which span the ocean and connect our locations we began researching the experiences of British Home Children - children who were transported to Canada, taken from home and sent across the water, effectively sold into indentured labour in an agreement between governments
In the records of ‘unclaimed’ children – ie. Children who have not been searched for or claimed by family, we found Ivor Jones, a 10 year old Welsh boy, sent to Canada by Barnardos in 1900. Ivor never returned.
Like many other British Home Children, Ivor’s story is all but lost. His persona and individuality have been wiped away by time. He is an empty vessel through which we will explore more general themes of abandonment, loss, journey, home and identity. These themes will be examined by the process of re-creating or re-covering the bones of Ivor Jones’ story through layers of poetic imaginings and allusions about his life, as well as actual research to actively weave together and connect the disconnected. It is a quest to vitalize through recovery and remembrance.
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