Digital Exhibition Launch: Letters from Ger with Queer Indonesia Archive

Sun 9 Jul 23, 11.30am–1pm

Free entry

The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, Fed Square

Community Hall Ground Level

Past program

Join us for the launch of the digital exhibition Letters from Ger by Queer Indonesia Archive.

In November 1964, Jakarta-based lesbian Ger van Braam became the first lesbian to feature openly on the cover of a lesbian magazine. Despite her place in lesbian history, very little was known about her or her life.

The first of its kind, this exhibition explores the life of Ger through a series of letters exchanged between her and Barbara Gittings – then editor of the lesbian magazine, The Ladder. Beginning in 1963 and ending in the final months of 1964, the letters trace a powerful period of transition both for Indonesia and for Ger herself.

The event will feature:

Live readings of historical materials by Bridget Harilaou and Natasha

An exhibition overview and history by Queer Indonesia Archive co-founder Beau Newham

A panel discussion on The Ladder, community archiving and the global lesbian movement in the pre-stonewall era with Joan Nestle (Lesbian Herstory Archives) and Angela Bailey (Australia Queer Archives)

Musical performance by Indonesian icon Kai Mata


Diletta Legowo is a Senior Social Innovator at The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI), dedicated to creating enabling conditions for people to find a sense of home within themselves, their communities, and the world. With a diverse background spanning arts, design, startups, international development, and teaching yoga, Diletta offers presence and multidisciplinary expertise to her work. She is a proud member of Melbourne’s vibrant BIPOC and queer community.


Bridget Harilaou is a mixed race, queer Indonesian, who writes extensively on politics and race. You can read more of their published work on SBS, Overland Literary Journal, Archer Magazine and The Age.

Natasha is a Chinese-Indonesian writer, public speaker, and educator based in Naarm. Her work can be found on Kill Your Darlings, ABC, Australian Multilingual Project, Archer Magazine and more. Her short stories are part of the anthologies Everything All At Once (Ultimo Press, 2021) and New Australian Fiction 2023 (Kill Your Darlings, 2023). She is working on her debut, a historical fiction YA.

Queer Indonesia Archive

Founded in 2020, Queer Indonesia Archive is a digital archiving project committed to the collection, preservation and celebration of material reflecting the lives and experiences of queer Indonesia. The project is volunteer-run, community-focused and non-profit.

General enquiries

Ph +61 3 8620 2222
9am–5pm, daily