Sacred Glass: The Wat Chong Klang Project. A talk by Judy Jensen


Texas artist Judy Jensen first visited Mae Hong Son in 2000. She was drawn to the 19th century Wat Chong Klang, which houses a collection of 180 Burmese reverse paintings on glass. Enamored with the lively boldness of the paintings, Jensen returned 5 years later. To her dismay, a number of the paintings had been either irreparable damaged or completely destroyed by the December 2004 earthquake.

Jensen left Thailand with the glimmer of an idea: that she could help. Her professional artistic process was reverse painting on glass, large undertakings weren’t new to her, and this was a cultural site deeply in need of an expert hand. The idea grew, and eventually became reality.

Since late 2012, Jensen has been making new glass paintings for the temple to replaced those destroyed. Although she considered the project quiet in scope, to her surprise it created ripples of interest and involvement far beyond what she had anticipated. Jensen will be discussing the touching generosity and remarkable coincidences which have propelled her undertaking, as well as the rewarding physical, spiritual, and artistic challenges involved.

Ms. Judy Jensen has exhibited widely. Solo venues include eight exhibits with New York’s Heller Gallery, the Galveston Arts Center, The Houston Center for Contemporary Crafts, and Brendan Walter Gallery in Los Angeles. Group exhibitions include Gerald Peters Gallery in New York, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., Atlanta’s High Museum, the New Delhi Biennale, Chicago’s Navy Pier, The Detroit Institute of Arts, and The Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art in Japan.

A U.S. National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship Grant recipient, her works are in numerous public and private collections, including Canada’s Royal Ontario Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, McDonald’s Corporate Art Collection, Austin/Bergstrom International Airport and the Washington Art Consortium. Her most recent honors are a grant from the James H.W. Thompson Foundation in Bangkok, and her designation by the City of Austin as Creative Ambassador to Thailand. In November 2014, she lectured about her projects at the Bangkok National Museum.

Date: Thursday, 12 November 2015
Time: 7.30 p.m.
Place: The Siam Society, 131 Asoke Montri Rd, Sukhumvit 21

Non-members donation: B200. Siam Society members, members’ spouses and children, and all students showing valid student ID cards are admitted free of charge. For more information, please contact Khun Arunsri or

Office Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 9:00am. – 5:00pm.

The Siam Society is deeply grateful to the James H.W. Thompson Foundation for its generous support of the 2014-2015 Lecture Series.