We asked you to send us postcards and this is what arrived

Way back at the end of April we invited you to send newCardigan a postcard. We extended the deadline for delivery to the end of June because COVID, and now we’re sharing what we received. Nik has already provided a sneak peak on our social channels, and we’ll continue to share them there over the coming weeks. But for those who like to binge, here they all are together!

Violet’s postcard took a little over two weeks to reach us all the way from Washington DC! Thanks so much Violet, this was a very unexpected surprise.

Michelle reminded us of a our fantastic cardiParty in Sale, where we got a private tour of the Sale Water Tower Museum from it’s driving force, and a river cruise complete with historical commentary. What a great day. Thanks for the postcard and for organising the cardiParty, Michelle!

This one was from a secret admirer. We like books too.

Our friends in Queensland cooked up a message for you all. Wondering about the Australia Post message Supporting Indigenous communities? Take a closer look at how this postcard was addressed. Nice.

This one must have arrived via airmail… The message was addressed “To the high flyers and the well-grounded, Thanks for all the work you do in GLAM institutions – may the stories you collect, in all their forms, continue to inspire many generations to come!”

w00t Amy got her PhD and is now a Dr of GLAM Philosophy!!! She was so excited, she handmade her own postcard with a picture of herself on it 🤩


The last year has been a tough one, and we know many of you are missing your GLAM fam. We’ve been missing you too! The recent Melbourne lockdown is keeping many of us apart all over again, but that doesn’t mean we have to talk to each other electronically forever!

For our birthday in 2021 we will be sharing messages from the newCardigan community, to the newCardigan community – so we need your help!

Here’s how it will work:

Send us a postcard with your message by the end of June, and we’ll share them with the newCardigan community all through June! Your message can be a note, a poem, a drawing, a tiny essay, a photo – anything Australia Post will let you send through the mail on A6 (105mm × 148mm) cardboard!

We’ll share an image of one card a day on Instagram and Twitter, and add them as our first deposit into the cardiArchive for posterity.

Post your postcard via ye olde snail mail to:

PO Box 51
Abbotsford VIC 3067

We can’t wait to collect our mail!!!

Statement on the protection of the Djab Wurrung sacred trees

The newCardigan Committee stand in solidarity with the Djab Wurrung people who are fighting to protect the sacred trees on country. On 27 October 2020 the Victorian government sanctioned the destruction of a 350 year old Yellowbox, the Directions Tree. More sacred trees are currently under threat of destruction to make way for the upgrade to the Western Highway, Victoria. 

Sacred trees should be protected as cultural heritage sites. Many people in the newCardigan community who work in the GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives, museums) sector, work hard to protect our cultural heritage. However, cultural heritage is not only the artefacts, specimens, books, papers, and objects found within our collections, but exists in culturally significant sites across Australia. It must be safeguarded and protected for future generations.

We acknowledge the leadership of the Australian Society of Archivists, our friends and colleagues, for posting the Statement: Djab Wurrung directions tree destruction.

To the Djab Wurrung people: We are with you.

To the newCardigan community: Get vocal and call Daniel Andrews on (03) 9651 5000 and say “I’m calling to register my protest against the works on Djab Wurrung country”. If you reach a voicemail, remember to leave your full name and postcode. 

To the Victorian government: Shame on you. Listen to the voices of First Peoples who have cared for this land for over 65,000 years.

Kassi Hays
Andrew Kelly
Nik McGrath
Clare Presser
Hugh Rundle

For information on how to take action in protecting the sacred trees on Djab Wurrung country see https://dwembassy.com

Five reflections on five years: Queerying the GLAM sector with newCardigan

newCardigan is five years old this month. If we were a human, we’d be “going” to school over Zoom by now! Normally we like to have a little birthday cardiParty in June, but things are weird this year. Instead, every day this week one of the ‘cardiCore’ will be sharing their personal reflections on the first five years of newCardigan. Please share your own reflections with us on your favourite social media, your blog, as a video or audio recording, an email, or via ye olde postal service. We can’t wait to read, hear and watch them.

In some reflections I shared about newCardigan for our third birthday in 2018, I noted that I had accidentally led many people to believe it was a group of and for queer GLAM professionals and noted how important it was to see them make a strong stance in support of marriage equality. Since 2018, I have moved from being a keen newCardigan participant to the newest cardiCore member in 2019 and we have gone down an even queerer path! We even made pride-themed badges:

At the September 2018 cardiParty, we chatted about the ephemeral nature of zines and the ethics of zine collecting and cataloguing, and I started making a zine about queerying the GLAM sector.

I want to pause to remember Charmaine Matyson who died late last year and was a volunteer zines collection cataloguer at the State Library of Victoria, and had volunteered at the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives and many other places too. I wish I’d known them better and been able to work with them, and greatly miss connecting on Twitter and at cardiParties, but am pleased that everyone can still hear them talk about zines in the recording of this cardiParty. Vale Charmaine. 

In October at the Grainger Museum, I discovered my new favourite fashion style (towelling!) and a museum that puts the kink in KINQ with its lust branch thanks to Tamara Jones, and learned about some ways in which Chelsea Harris has been encouraging and supporting diversity in  the GLAM sector.

The cardiParty at Incendium Radical Library in February 2019 stuck with me (and Hugh) and I highly recommend reading this harm minimisation approach to the operation of GLAM institutions which it inspired too. It was so empowering to see and hear about what is pretty much the library of my dreams.

In March 2019, I hosted my first cardiParty at the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives (ALGA) where we heard from committee members and a GLAMorous volunteer (Roxanne), and had a tour of our reading room. I don’t think my colleague Richard quite believed me when I said how excited people would be to hear about Project Monte – our online catalogue system project – on a Friday night, but he quickly learned that we were the perfect audience for this! You can find out more in Richard’s conference paper at LGBTQ ALMS in Berlin later that year. I loved that we had quite a few first time cardiParty attendees at this event.

Not long after this cardiParty, there was one with Archie Boulter who talked about their experiences creating queer spaces in the GLAM sector and beyond, co-leading the establishment of LGBTIQA+ Advisory Groups across Museums Victoria, and setting up Queer Town as part of part of the Foundry658 Accelerator program run by ACMI and the State Library. I didn’t host this one, but I loved it and it played a role in the first cardiParty I organised as a committee member… just before lockdown on Friday the 13th (!) of March. 

I hosted Queerying the GLAM sector teach in that was a little like the participatory zine and Incendium Radical Library cardiParty formats. I crowdsourced resources and questions beforehand which you can still view and add to online. It was one of the last things I did in the before times and it has really helped me get through this pandemic. The key messages I took from the discussion were around the importance of solidarity and peer support and the need for allies & accomplices to listen and then act, which have been so formative in these times of physical distancing and intense union activism for me. Angela Bailey, president of ALGA, attended and mentioned the letters of support and solidarity that can be found in our archives last night and it’s got me remembering when I first learned about about the gay library workers group from the 70s and their bibliographical babbling (my gaytway to ALGA which I discovered around the time i’d first started working in libraries and safe schools coalition was being attacked) so I thought I’d share a little snapshot of it:

I love being part of newCardigan as we help create spaces for GLAM sector workers to listen to diverse perspectives and empower them to be allies and accomplices and act (or as we say JFDI), and look forward to doing so even more in future.

Five reflections on five years: helping people be awesome

newCardigan is five years old this month. If we were a human, we’d be “going” to school over Zoom by now! Normally we like to have a little birthday cardiParty in June, but things are weird this year. Instead, every day this week one of the ‘cardiCore’ will be sharing their personal reflections on the first five years of newCardigan. Please share your own reflections with us on your favourite social media, your blog, as a video or audio recording, an email, or via ye olde postal service. We can’t wait to read, hear and watch them.

I joined newCardigan in early 2017 as a ‘friend from the West’. I had never been to a cardiParty but I knew that I wanted to set them up in Perth. I spent that year watching, learning, and scoping out potential cardiParties in Perth. Would the Melbourne setup work for the laid back, spread out Perth region? What happens when we run out of places to visit? Who’s going to help me? Luckily I had great support and knew some excellent people to tap on the shoulder and they happily helped me out.

Not many early Perth photos exist as it was hard to run an event and capture it on film all by yourself! Instead enjoy the Bon Scott Memorial from our Fremantle Cemetery cardiParty.

Watching the Perth events grow and change over the last few years have helped restore my joy in GLAM. Talking to museum folks about exhibitions, introducing librarians to archivists, and visiting places that we’d not normally go. One of my favourite cardiParties would have to be the walking pub tour of Perth. Not only was it hilarious, fun, and informative, but we got to ‘drink’ in some culture along the way. Honestly, you haven’t lived till you’ve rushed from bar-to-bar with a group of GLAM folk talking about architecture, society, and beer.

The Omeo is Perth’s premier shore-based shipwreck, lying just under water, only 25m from the shore of Coogee Beach. Our Coogee Maritime trail tour was another unique Perth cardiParty.

newCardigan helps GLAM professionals to be more awesome. This is why I wanted to bring newCardigan to WA. Nothing gives me greater joy than to introduce two amazing people and say ‘you should talk’ and walk away knowing that the seeds for some interesting project might be about to be born. Be it new people coming along to their first event or seeing those familiar faces turn up again and again, I think everyone walks away from a cardiParty a little bit changed for the better. Five years of newCardigan means five years of helping people be awesome, and what’s better than that?