Guest Curators

We want to say thank you to our outgoing Guest Curator, Peter Tokofsky! If you missed a chance to see his fantastic artifacts, please stop by the Guest Curator Archive Page. You can also examine all of our past Guest Curator’s as well.

Welcome to our Guest Curator, Dan Jenkins!

Dan Jenkins was born and educated in Los Angeles. Attending Chouinard School of Art (now CalArts) as a graphics design major, he also studied woodworking which would come in handy some years down the road.  Years later, a chance conversation with a fellow employee piqued his interest in both Buddhism and the cultures of South East Asia. Flying over to Thailand in 1985, he has described it as that moment “when Dorothy steps out of her house into the land of Oz”’

    Dan began building Spirit Houses shortly after getting married to his wife, Vallaya who is from Thailand. She proved to be his toughest critic in terms of design and many early efforts ended in the trash.  Persistence paid off as in 2007, a phone call turned things around as Norine Dresser found out that they were almost neighbors.  Norine was impressed by his houses and his passion for the art of Thailand. He went on to win the coveted Elaine Weissman L.A. Treasures award for folk art, twice. (2007-2008) Several major exhibits arranged through the Los Angeles County Library followed, along with a short exhibit and panel discussion at the Skirball Cultural Center.

 Dan also undertook a major exhibit every year at the Thai Cultural Day Festival held at Barnsdall Park in Los Angeles under the auspices of the Thai Cultural Arts group. Both He and Vallaya produced a 30-minute documentary featuring 4 of the best-known Thai Artists in Los Angeles.

 Dan and his wife now live in a semi-rural area of Rayong, Thailand, still painting, still collecting, still deeply passionate about the Arts of Thailand.

If you are a folklorist or a collector of folklore/popular culture artifacts, please consider becoming a Guest Curator. Your objects will be highlighted here on a rotating basis.

All we ask is that the objects be yours, you have a photograph of the objects, and all or most of the information about the object (see the guidelines below, for more details).

Guest Curator Guidelines:

1. Artifacts must fall within the subject of our website (folklore, folk art, popular culture, etc).

2. Artifacts must be a part of your own personal collection.

3. Submissions must be limited to no more than five artifacts.

4. Submissions must contain a photograph of the artifact, as well as the title, purpose, country of origin, culture , materials, and dimensions of the artifact.

5. We also would like your photograph and a brief biography to accompany the collection.

Please contact, and write Guest Curator in the subject line for further information or with any questions. We cannot wait to highlight your collection!