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  • Ben's brief:

    A belt designed for a dancer named Peter,  using the symbolism of roots to show the symbiotic relationship between him and his wheelchair, which he thinks of as a living being. Rope designed to look like roots runs up and down his legs and attaches to his wheelchair in the back. 

    Peter's Roots is a belt designed for Peter, a dancer at the Heidi Latsky dance company. Peter has cerebral palsy, which forces him to use a wheelchair while dancing. His love of the environment inspired the design, in which rope that looks like roots runs up and down his legs and attaches to his wheelchair in the back. The final design incorporates acrylic that holds the rope in place to ensure a root-like look. Peter just has to slip the belt and leg piece onto his waist to wear it for the On Display performance which addresses the issue of how people with disabilities are viewed by society. Because Peter is very open about his disability and is quite outgoing, the wearable doesn't try to hide his disability but instead draws attention to it. Peter's Roots helps Peter show that the wheelchair is not an impairment but an essential part of who he is.

    Richie's Brief:

    A wearable that explores the bond between Peter and his wheelchair, which he has named Timothy. It consists of rope frayed to look like roots that runs all around Peter's lower body and straps him into his wheelchair.  

    Peter's Roots is a wearable inspired by Peter, a dancer in Heidi Latsky's dance company, which focuses on the inclusion of all bodies. Because Peter has cerebral palsy, which has restricted the use of his legs, he uses a wheelchair, but he likes to be seen as more than his disability. Peter majored in environmental studies in college and would like to work with the environment. This inspired the design to have a natural feel. Peter's Roots consists of rope frayed to look like roots that runs all around Peter's lower body and straps him into his wheelchair. [this is significant--does the belt replace a functional strap that felt constraining? it's a good point to spell out] Peter calls his wheelchair Timothy and sees Timothy as a dance partner when he is dancing. The roots in the design illustrate the living connection between Peter and Timothy. On Display, the art installation for which Peter will wear Peter's Roots, engages the issue of how people with disabilities, and their use of assistive devices, are viewed in our society. The hope is that Peter's Roots will help people to see a wheelchair not as a symbol of disability, but as a symbol of enabling. The final design modified the arrangement of the rope roots so that the flow of roots was more organized.