Made by Rachel Balma




A blanket and music-therapy tool that translates music into varied, haptic feedback for pediatric patients who are deaf or hearing impaired.

Pediatric patients who are deaf or profoundly hearing impaired rely on the tangible aspects of music to gain benefit from music therapy, a creative and clinical practice that can play a key role in their multi-faceted growth and development. However, traditional instruments were largely built for an audio, not tactile, sound experience. They were also built for body shapes, sizes, and abilities that fall towards the center of the bell curve.

Form takes a fluid and familiar shape, a blanket, to meet the varied needs of the patients. It allows music therapists to use their own familiar interface, traditional instruments, but gives patients more nuanced haptic feedback than a traditional instrument is able to. Form is, at its heart, an exercise in exploring what music feels like when the only way it’s experienced is through tactile means. More theoretically, it looks to shift our perspective on music, sound, and ability.