Tiwi Heroes and the Butterfly Effect 

Oil and acrylic on board 

45 X 55cm 

 This work celebrates Matthias Ulungura, the first person to capture a Japanese prisoner of war on Australian soil, and all the unsung Tiwi heroes who protected their homeland during the Second World War.  

In February 1942 the Japanese dropped twice as many bombs on Darwin as they did on Pearl Harbour in December 1941.  

A Japanese plane crashed in the Tiwi Islands and the pilot, Hajime Toyoshima, survived the crash. Matthias captured the enemy combatant and escorted him to RAAF guards stationed on the island.  

Matthias and his brother-in-law Louie Purraputumali Munkara captured another five Japanese pilots.  

The other two portraits in this work are that of Franz Ferdinand and Gavrilo Princip. The Archduke of Austria-Hungary and his assassin. This assassination in 1914 set of the July Crisis which led to the First World War.  

The work raises the question of what forces are at play that an incident between a Bosnian and Austrian in Sarajevo could lead to a Tiwi man capturing a Japanese pilot on the other side of the world 28 years later.