Artful Innovation: Inclusive Design and Technology

July 20 – August 30, 2017 | A Jean Kennedy Smith Arts and Disability Program

Part of JFKC: A Centennial Celebration of John F. Kennedy

This exhibition presents objects that combine inclusive design and technology and result in equal parts, art and function. Together art, design, and technology produce ingenious and beautiful solutions that enable people of all abilities to interact with their environments.

“Art means more than the resuscitation of the past: it means the free and unconfined search for new ways of expressing the experience of the present and the vision of the future.”

President John F. Kennedy

A woman sporting Sophie de Oliveira Barata's transparent and gold Alternative Limb

The Alternative Limb Project

Sophie de Oliveira Barata, founder of The Alternative Limb Project, creates her art within prosthetic arms and legs. This arm was designed for model Kelly Knox who was born without a forearm.

A woman wears the Aura Powered Suit, a light gray body suit with green built-in support bands along the back and knees.

Aura Powered Suit

The Aura Powered Suit is powered clothing designed to assist movement for older adults.

A person touching the raised markers of the Bradley Timepiece to tell time.

The Bradley Timepiece

The Bradley is a watch that can be touched and seen to tell time, providing equal access for people who are blind or have low vision.

A close up of a human hand covered in the Carpal Skin prototype that is white with various ridges on the outside.

Carpal Skin

Carpal Skin is a prototype for a protective glove to protect against Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

A man wearing the Cheetah Leg on his right leg runs on a running track.

The Cheetah Leg

The Cheetah Leg prosthesis imitates the power and agility of a running cheetah.

A laughing young boy squats, holding his right, 3D printed hand to his chest and holding an e-Nable necklace with his left hand.

e-NABLE 3D Prostheses

The e-NABLE Community provides free and low-cost 3D printable assistive devices for individuals with upper-limb differences.

Emilie Gossiaux sits at a table and paints with black paint while wearing the Brainport Visions Device.

Emilie Gossiaux and BrainPort

Emilie Gossiaux’s watercolor painting was made with the assistance of the BrainPort Vision Device.

A woman wearing watch-like device, The Emma, on her wrist writes the name Emma on a sheet of lined paper.

The Emma

The Emma allows graphic designer Emma Lawton, who has Parkinson’s disease, to write and draw clearly.

A black, square device with gray buttons in the bottom center. The digital interface displays the companies acronym APH.


Graphiti is a tactile touch display that enables people who are blind or have low vision to access onscreen graphic.

An elderly man holds an illuminated Ichó ball.


Ichó, is an interactive device in the form of a ball for therapeutic use. It’s a new digital device dedicated to people with cognitive limitations such as dementia.

The smart toy Leka, a robotic sphere, rests on a table smiling through its digital interface.


An interactive and multi-sensory smart toy designed to help children with autism learn to interact and communicate.

A man wearing the Mi.Mu Gloves points upwards with his index finger.

Mi.Mu Gloves

Using a computer interface, the Mi.Mu Gloves can produce and manipulate sound through gesture.

The friendly looking white and blue NAO robot stands with his elbows bent and looks forward.


NAO is a human-like robot and is designed to assist children who have autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

A man is using both of his hands to feel the raised lines of an architectural drawing.

Raised Line Drawings

Chris Downey is an architect, planner, and consultant who is blind and uses raised-line drawings in his work.

The Read the Music device scans an open book of sheet music.

Read the Music

Read the Music allows musicians who are unable to read printed or handwritten sheet music to hear the notes played.

A drummer plays the drums using the Robotic Drumming Prosthesis.

Robotic Drumming Prosthesis

The Robotic Drumming prosthesis allows drummers without an arm to continue playing the drums. The prosthesis even includes an improvisation mechanism.

An older woman rides her Scooter for Life alongside her young grandson, who is riding a child’s scooter.

Scooter for Life

A scooter designed to help older adults stay active, safe, and comfortable.

A bronze sculpture of Neil Harbisson with his eyeborg antenna. The antenna goes from inside the back of his head to hanging over his forehead.

The Sonochromatic Head

The Sonochromatic Head illustrates an eyeborg antenna that allows Harbisson to identify colors through sound frequencies.

A woman is pictured sitting in a theater where the music activates the Soundshirt's light up dots and haptic sensations.

The Soundshirt

The Soundshirt allows deaf audience members to experience live music.

A woman wears the Thync Relax. The triangular device rests independently on the back of her neck.

Thync Relax

The Thync Relax autonomic stimulates the nervous system resulting in relief from stress and anxiety.

A v-shaped wearable from the waist to mid-thigh that is composed of variously sized contorted tubular plastic. The plastic is blue, dark green, red, and dark orange.


Wanderers is a series of 3D life-sustaining wearables that explore the idea of how dangerous planetary elements can be transformed to sustain human life.

The WHILL is a modern black, white, and gray wheelchair with four wheels.


The developers of the WHILL power wheelchair wanted to improve the personal mobility experience with innovative design and advanced technology.