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Namrata Sarmah

Directorate of Museums, Government of Assam

Project Curator

Country: India


Namrata has a masters degree in History from the University of Delhi and in Museology from the National Museum Institute, New Delhi. Her professional interests lie in histories of memories, tangible and intangible heritages and cultural studies. In her work she is interested in engaging with oral narratives of mutinies and resistances, and memories of displacement in South Asia during decolonisation.

Currently Namrata is working at the Directorate of Museums, Assam as a Project Curator. She is working on content development and gallery designing projects (Textile and Natural History gallery), overseeing educational activities, and also writing a Catalogue on the Costumes of the Ahom Royalty. She is also designing display and curation for different district museums of Assam under the Directorate of Museums.

Namrata is also designing the display of Madan Kamdev, a 9th-10th century archaeological site in Baihata, Assam containing sizeable statues and sculptures depicting Hindu gods such as Shiva, Vishnu, Ganesha, Surya (Sun God) and Apsaras (celestial nymphs). The site is believed to be a tribute to Kamdev and Rati, the deities of love. She is also planning an interactive seminar/workshop for museum professionals in the District museum in Karbi Anglong, one of the remotest mountainous districts of Assam.

Namrata has previously worked as a Research Assistant in the Directorate of Archaeology, Government of Assam. Her main responsibilities included visiting excavation sites and on-site documentation, for example: documenting the stone sculptures in Deopahar Archaeological Park in Numaligarh, Assam where the chief focus of the site is a temple dedicated to Hindu God Shiva, which can be dated to 7th-9th century. The sculptures of the temple are indicative of the Gupta-era art and contains depictions of episodes from ancient Indian epics and sacred texts such as Ramayan, Mahabharat and Bhagavad Purana.

Previously Namrata worked at Nehru Memorial Museum and Library as an education assistant, where she conducted educational programmes for audiences, in particular for students and dignitaries. She generated ideas to expand the reach of the museum and its collections to a wide range of visitors. Namrata was also involved in exhibition related duties, including assisting the curators, image documentation, designing research modules and developing content for museum galleries.

At the British Museum
During her time on the International Training Programme, Namrata was based in the Asia Department and spent her partner placement at National Museums Northern Ireland.

Namrata worked with Rafidah Bahari (Malaysia) and Solomy Nabukalu (Uganda) on her Object in focus project, Guts and Eternal Glory.

Namrata’s place on the International Training Programme was generously supported by the Charles Wallace India Trust and the Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation.

Legacy projects
In 2019, Namrata took part in the ITP+ Course on Museums and Education held at CSMVS Mumbai which focused on the vital role museums can play in education, learning and social development. The workshop was attended by ITP fellows from India, Malaysia, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe as well as UK partners and British Museum colleagues.

In October 2019 Namrata participated in the ITP MA Conference programme in Brighton. With fellows from Egypt, Nepal, China and Malaysia, Namrata attended a programme structured around the 3-day MA Conference on Sustainable and Ethical Museums in a Globalised World.

ITP Newsletter Publications
ITP Newsletter Issue 6 (2019), Your collection in focus: Silk production in Assam
ITP Newsletter Issue 7 (2020) Inclusivity and social responsibility in India: Engaging with medical professionals
ITP Newsletter Issue 8 (2021) Health and wellness in a pandemic
ITP Newsletter 9 (2022) The story of the palanquin