These photos tell a story about our lives. Even though the children and grandchildren are not in them, they and others in our family are in photos and object in the background of this pictures. Our house is such an important character in our lives. For years we dreamed of having a house. When we rented we always talked about the things we would do, always including walls we would tear down! Our house has been Daniel's canvas. He has done all the remodeling, built lots of the furniture, created the garden, build me beautiful things and given me my wonderful nest. 

This has been, in some ways the most difficult period of our lives. So much going on. Daniel's cancer, the accident, my mother moving in. But through it all we have not forgotten that we are blessed. I am reminded of it every time I lift my eyes and see something beautiful that Daniel has created. Our joke is that he is an "artist in residence", our residence! 

Life is rich, and messy and complicated. I think beauty is an important reminder that there is always something to come back to. It has accompanied us through all that has happened these last few months. As I write this Daniel and the dog are asleep in our bed, that Daniel built. I look up to see pictures of fathers, grandmothers, sisters, children, and grandchildren and listen for the sounds of my mother sleeping in the other room.

By Daniel's wife, Denise
aniel 1948
Daniel, borned 1948 / project 2012
Photographs by Feng Haoyu

Daniel: I've always been an engineer and a musician. Here, my father caught me working on a motorized "windmill", which I suppose one would call a fan.

Denise: I have always loved this picture of Daniel. It is remarkable to me that he was so completely who he is when he was so young.
Daniel: OK, OK. I'm a bit of a mad man. But I do my solid modeling of a car frame in soda straws.Denise: Daniel is right, he is a mad man. He is so in his element here.
Daniel: There are little ideas in each frame that make them worth keeping.
Denise: The first moment I noticed I was in love with Daniel was seeing this look of pure concentrate. I have never known anyone who puts themselves more into their work.
Daniel: ...even if they are taking over my electronics shop.
Denise: He delights in his madness.
Denise: Daniel loves spending time in his basement. It is his domain.
Daniel: The seven-foot ceilings in my wood and metal shop, allow me to hang lots of stuff from the ceiling.
Denise: Daniel is a wonderful blend of craftsperson, mad scientist, and philosopher. I love this picture of him, it is so Daniel.
Daniel: It's a little embarrassing to have Maher Baba looking over us as we make love, but he does.
Denise: This picture is so rich, with all the family pictures and yes, Meher Baba watching over us. The photo of Meher Baba belonged to our close friend and housemate Roman. He lived with us while he was dying and this picture watched over him, it still gives me comfort. I believe that God shows up everywhere. Certainly for me one of the places is in that kind look of his.
Daniel: Proof positive that there isn't enough room to put a little dinette area in the kitchen...kidding. 8?)

Denise: Daniel and I collaborated on almost all of the design aspects of the house, but it has been his genius and hard work that has made it happen. One of the few fights we got into in the remodel was my wanting this dinette, that he was against. But here it is. And all Pliskin. Three legged table, lamp (still a work in progress), wonderful pass through where the cat and the grandchildren love to sit.
Daniel: I got the idea to open up the built-in, so that light would get through between the living room to the kitchen. The next day I was up there with a skill saw, slicing and dicing. And I'm still glad I did it.
Denise: This is my favorite piece of art. Her sad and wise eyes, have kept watch over me for over 20 years. She has a beauty and calmness that remind me of how fragile life is.
Daniel: When you stop thinking you get kudos for being miserable, life shows up as fabulous.
Denise: Daniel and I have an amazing life. When I look at this picture I think of what we have gone through this past year and feel blessed. When we found out Daniel had cancer it was terrifying. When he lost his fingers a few months later it seemed like something out of a bad movie. But it here we are, happy and feeling blessed.
Daniel: I love to weld, so I gave myself the assignment to come up with ten steel spheres, of different technologies. It's amazing how much geometry I need to dredge up, in order to make these things.
Denise: I love these balls! I have commissioned 30 from 4' in dia to 1". So far I have 2 and am told there is a 3rd in the shop. I really want 100, but I may wait to tell Dan.
Daniel: Gee, we've had several weddings at our houses, so that the newly weds could kiss under my arch of roses, but this is the first time I've gotten kissed under it. 
Denise: I love this photo, there is so much going on. Our house that we love so much, our wonderful dog, the arch that represents a gateway to life, the two of us together.
Daniel: Somehow, I got more interested in practicing than in performing. I've practiced one instrument or another, for the last 59 years. For the last 14 years, it's been the trombone.
Denise: One of the saddest things to me when Daniel lost his fingers was that he would no longer be able to play the guitar, banjo, English horn or oboe. But I am so glad he has his trombone. But he's wrong, he has been playing it got 16 year. He started when I went to India to take Roman's ashes to Meher Baba tomb in India.
Daniel: Is my wife eating a pillow?
Denise: This is actually a very reveling photo. We were just getting the room ready to move my mother in. There is here wheel chair in the background. I think I was filled with hope and fear. Another big change in our lives.
Denise: I look so serious here, and a little sad. Perhaps just pensive. The background is filled with our lives. A sculpture Daniel's mother did of him, a painting by our granddaughter, photos of and by Daniel's father on the shelf. Both of Daniel's parents were artist. His father was a famous advertising exec, one of the Mad Men.
Denise: Our Dining room was inspired by a wonderful hotel in Manhattan that has a large open lobby that is a cafe and a library. I wanted to paint the wall black but Daniel vetoed that. So much has happened in this room. Wonderful meals, great conversations, the grandkids toys are in there, so much life.
Daniel: It strikes me as odd that I really haven't changed all that much over the last 55 years.
Denise: I love this picture of Daniel with himself as a child. He is still very boyish!
Daniel: You seem to particularly love seeing D and I kissing.
Denise: Here we are, in our wonderful little house. Daniel's canvass.
Daniel: Yow, If I can just keep my mouth shut, I just might get some tonight.
Denise: Daniel's sarcasm (note HIS comment), is what I love least about him. What I love most is how brilliant and creative he is. But also how big his heart is. He hides it behind his sarcasm.
Daniel: Again, Dan working on a motorized "windmill".
Denise: There is so much in this photo. I didn't expect to be so moved. That same wonder that was there when he was young has sustained him. There is also my covering Daniel's hands with mine. When he lost his fingers I was, in some ways, more devastated than he. I had felt, irrationally, that I should have been able to protect him from harm. Somehow I think that is my job, to keep my family safe. I failed.
Thanks to Daniel and Denise
by Feng Haoyu
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