Stolen Years: Australian prisoners of war
Years: Australian prisoners of war tells the story of Australian
prisoners of war - evocative, realistic, personal and often tragic -
from the First World War to the Second World War and Korea.
It was a tragedy: the dying and the hating equally … but there emerged a sense of values which made the simple rich and profound.
Ray Parkin, HMAS Perth
A pilot in Turkey, a soldier in Germany, a nurse in Indonesia, a sailor in Japan: more than 34,000 Australians have endured captivity in wartime.
They spent months or years behind barbed wire. At first somewhat dazed, they were usually hungry and bored, often cold or sick; sometimes forced to work. Always under the control of their captors, many were treated badly or beaten; some tortured or killed.
Prisoners of the Japanese, the largest group by far, suffered most severely. The balance of this exhibition reflects their experience.
Captivity often confronted men and women with challenges to their self-worth. Though captivity was never a matter of choice, prisoners of war were often embarrassed by their fate. But for what they endured and how they survived, these men and women deserve our understanding, respect and admiration.
Captivity was a time when lives were interrupted, hopes put away and relationships strained. For all of them, these were Stolen Years.
An online version of the exhibition is available.
|Australian War Memorial||Canberra||ACT||08 November 2002||02 March 2003|
|Orange Regional Gallery||Orange||NSW||05 April 2003||11 May 2003|
|Shepparton Art Gallery||Shepparton||VIC||25 July 2003||31 August 2003|
|Queen Victoria Museum and Gallery||Launceston||TAS||19 September 2003||11 November 2003|
|Monash Gallery of Art, Wheelers Hill||Melbourne||VIC||05 December 2003||18 January 2004|
|Hervey Bay Regional Gallery||Hervey Bay||QLD||31 January 2004||14 March 2004|
|Queensland Museum||Brisbane||QLD||26 March 2004||09 May 2004|
|Rockhampton Art Gallery||Rockhampton||QLD||20 May 2004||21 July 2004|
|Hazelhurst Regional Gallery and Art Centre||Sydney||NSW||31 July 2004||26 September 2004|
|Flinders University Art Museum||Adelaide||SA||08 October 2004||14 November 2004|
|Museum and Gallery of the Northern Territory||Darwin||NT||26 November 2004||28 March 2005|
|Western Australian Museum||Perth||WA||15 April 2005||26 June 2005|
Stolen Years Education Material
- Stolen Years: Australian prisoners of war education material (1.4Mb PDF file)