Project Denjong is community of thought that aspires to redefine our relationships with our communities, our cultures, and our landscapes. We host a non-profit collection of initiatives focused on facilitating scholarship and encouraging creativity to restore a sense of collective ownership in heritage preservation. We invest in people, in creativity, in education, and in the revitalization – rather than the memorialization – of Sikkim’s rich heritage to ensure that our wisdom traditions continue to be an integral, living part of our contemporary identity.
Over time, as our merit matures, we aspire to host initiatives that balance contemplation and innovation. We aspire to facilitate the preservation and dissemination of the Sikkim’s tangible and intangible cultural heritage, through the use of information technology tools and techniques that will build the largest interactive multimedia knowledge resource on Sikkim.
Hoping to contribute to the growing archive of historical research and cultural revitalization in India, Project Denjong was born out of a search for wisdom and a thirst for knowledge, and exists as an exercise of scholarship and archive, of discourse and development.
For more information, please visit our projects page.
The mission of Project Denjong is to recover, study, preserve, and make available to the global public historically important elements of Sikkim – documents, photographs, paintings, correspondence, stories, and objects – as well as encouraging a new generation of people in Sikkim to engage creatively with them.
Project Denjong is guided by:
Please join us in developing Sikkim’s only independent, non-profit, platform for the recovery, study, preservation, and exhibition of Sikkim’s cultural heritage and contemporary creativity.
Project Denjong was conceptualised and founded by cultural heritage advocate and development professional, Pema Choeden Namgyal Abrahams, working at the intersection of these two fields and dedicated to building an innovative community that can sustainably revitalize Sikkim’s rich culture and wisdom traditions.
Prior to Project Denjong, Pema spent the past decade gaining well-rounded experience across the arts and international non-profit industries. She is a former international human rights researcher, advocate, and development professional with Human Rights Watch (New York and New Delhi), The Asia Foundation (Kathmandu), International Crisis Group (London), and Nepal contributor for the international humanitarian news organisation, IRIN. Previously, while living in New York City, Pema worked in the cultural realm at the International Center of Photography, Art on Paper magazine, and 401 Projects- photographer Mark Seliger’s non-profit exhibition space.
Pema has also recently founded Mahalaya Journeys, a social travel venture that aspires to redefine travel to Sikkim. Through innovative partnerships with local communities, it works to preserve and strengthen knowledge of the wisdom culture and sacred landscapes of the Sikkim Himalaya. This ensures not only livelihoods, but emphasizes the inextricable links between intangible and tangible cultural heritage. A percentage of the profits go directly to support Project Denjong.
She holds an MSc Conflict Studies with a concentration in international humanitarian law; and a Certification in International Human Rights Law and Practice, both from the London School of Economics and Political Science (2013). She received BA History (minoring in Art History) from New York University (2007).