Leaving Childhood      


Bearing Witness: The Voices of Our Survivors
The "Mikvah" series

- Her Mikvah, Kedushat Yetzirah (Updated version, Powerpoint)
- Her Mikvah, Kedushat Yetzirah (Holiness of Creation)
- Transformation
- Leaving Childhood

Women of the Wall
The Fence
These are some Jews that Hitler Did Not Get
Conversations with Dad
Mother Daughter 2003
Mother Daughter 2004
Mother Daugter 2005
Mother Daughter 2006





Artist’s Statement

Dena Elisabeth Eber


The Mikvah Bath, Leaving Childhood


Using the Jewish ritual of a Mikvah Bath as a metaphor, this series of work visually embodies the awakening of moving beyond childhood and starting the transition of being a young adult.  The transition is an awareness, both bitter and sweet, that one is in some ways no longer innocent, but in other ways still vastly naïve. 


The Mikvah is not, as commonly thought, about cleaning oneself, but rather about spiritual renewal, a transition from one way of being to another.  Although Mikvahs are significant for both males and females, they have special meaning for women.  A very common reason for having a Mikvah is tied to a woman’s menstrual cycle and is a celebration of her sexuality and not, as frequently believed, a physical cleansing of menstrual blood.  The use of a Mikvah in this body of work foreshadows the beauty of femininity and awareness that is in the near future.  The hands on either side of the girl represent a spiritual cleansing, but also take the form of wings symbolic of the journey this girl is soon to take.  The loss of innocence is celebratory and heartbreaking at once, but ultimately it is a sacred new beginning.


I created this work by digitally combining many images to seamlessly create the perception of a captured moment in time.


© copyright 2001-2013  
All rights reserved by [ Dena Elisabeth Eber ]