Mermaid mythology reaches far and wide, informing the ways in which cultures view young women: they are fertile, tempting, majestic, and powerful. Able to empathize with human beings, they inhabit worlds of fantasy and terror, luring fisherman away from their daily catch with sweet music and sweeping gestures of the tail.
In her series Milk & Sea, the photographer Hana Vojáčková imagines the mermaids that weave together the folklore of various European cultures. Incorporating both the fantasies and popular culture of each country, she presents her version of its native mermaid. For the series, she spoke to young ladies from each country, happening upon the title Milk & Sea as a play off of “the traditional Czech expression for a healthy girl [as …] 'blood and milk.’”
Indeed, each mermaid becomes the picture of vitality, courageously entering mainstream culture and bringing with her echoes of a magical underwater world just beyond our reach. I hope her future work includes even more mermaids from diverse backgrounds, like those found in literature from Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean. Take a look at the gorgeous series below!
Thanks to My Modern Met
Images via My Modern Met
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