Live Instrumental/Performance Spine Prosthetic

Category: 3D Modeling/ Laser Cutting/ LEDS/ Touch & Motion Sensors/ Etc.

Industry: Prosthetics/ Musical Instrument Design/ Wearable Technology

Location: Canada (McGill University – Input Devices and Music Interaction Lab)

Related to: Music/Dance

Reviewer: MH – Parsons School of Fine Arts

Company: Joseph Malloch and Ian Hattwick


About: Music performance and dance have long been in sync with each’s practice, and with modern technology we have to ability to challenge those acts – combining them as a single force. Joseph Malloch and Ian Hattwick, two PhD researchers at McGill University in Canada, have created a malleable spine instrument. The goal for the instrument was for it to imply a prosthetic on the backside of the dancer, allowing their gestures to sensor sound as they move through space. In an interview by Dezeen, Kate Andrews and the researchers explore more about the motives to their makings in which Ian explains the future of technological instruments, by saying:

“One of the ways in which I see the prosthetic instruments making a real contribution is the idea that technological devices should be made to accommodate the human body, and not the other way around. Particularly, you see musical instruments created so as to be easy to mass-manufacture, rather than seeking to identify and support natural physical expressions during musical performance. At the same time, by creating technologies which are invisible to the performer we take away the physical interaction with an instrument which is so much a part of how we think about performance, both individually and in ensembles.” (Ian Hattwick)