“ASEAN is ethnically diverse and very rich in culture, traditional knowledge, and beliefs. The people of ASEAN find explanations to natural events and phenomena through stories and folk tales. Some of the mythological characters in ASEAN associated with oceans and seas include mermaids or sirena, Suvannamaccha, Naga, Nyai Roro Kidul, Giat Hai,and Lidagat. These characters are mostly female, depicting how the society commonly associates nature with women. Like women, nature is being regarded as pure, simple, beautiful, nurturing, and must be treated with utmost respect. Whether these tall tales are real or not, they definitely helped shape the beautiful culture of ASEAN, and instilled respect and love for the environment to the minds and hearts of the ASEAN people.”

These artworks are part of the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity’s exhibit titled A SEA Story.

Eisen Bernard Bernardo: website / behance