Haenyo, literally meaning “sea women”, are the female deep-sea divers of Jeju-do, South Korea. They live a dual lifestyle—one belonging to the land and the other to the sea. It is easy to see how the mermaid myth began as you watch the Haenyo surface from the deep. Haenyo also communicate with song and whistles, contributing further to their mythical status. With mermaid statues scattered throughout the coast of this island, it’s clear that these women are upholding a tradition as well as supporting a myth.
Haenyo perform perilous work to provide for their families, spending five hours a day diving in rubber suits, without air tanks as the law requires, to collect valuable sea life attached to the bottom of the ocean floor. They can hold their breath for more than three minutes and dive to depths of thirty meters. Because tradition dictates that only women dive, the Haenyo have created a matriarchal society on the island that differs greatly from the patriarchal one on the mainland of South Korea.
Today, the number of Haenyo is declining drastically and its tradition is in danger of extinction as fewer women are choosing it as a profession due to better opportunities and industrialization.
+ Limited-edition, exclusive to 20x200
+ Museum quality: archival inks, 100% cotton rag paper unless noted
+ Signed + numbered certificate of authenticity included
+ Directly supports the artist
+ Handcrafted custom-framing is available
Our quoted dimensions are for the size of paper containing the images, not the printed image itself. We do not alter the aspect ratio, nor do we crop or resize the artists’ originals. All of our prints have a minimum border of .5 inches to allow for framing.
Innova Fibaprint Warm Cotton Gloss
10"x8" | edition of 20
14"x11" | edition of 250
20"x16" | edition of 100
30"x24" | edition of 10
50"x40" | edition of 2