The R82 Scallop will be featured at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum’s Access+Ability exhibit, New York City, that features more than 70 works that aid in social interactions, daily living, play and in navigating the environment. Developed by Keira Gwynn, a 24-year old originally from Wales, the portable R82 Scallop special needs seat originally came to life as a university project.

Keira designed the R82 Scallop to aid children living with mild to moderate disabilities in floor sitting and to add extra support while sitting on a chair. “The R82 Scallop encourages long sitting or sitting with slightly bent knees, naturally preventing children from sitting in “W” shape or in a slouching frog position which could be detrimental to health and posture", Ms. Gwynn said.

The design caught the attention of R82 and Keira and R82 entered into a partnership in 2015 which resulted in her coming to Denmark to develop the product and bring it to market. She now works as a Project Leader in R82’s Central Marketing Department.

Keira Gwynn in the process of developing the R82 Scallop

The R82 Scallop primarily serves children with moderate special needs or behavioral disorders within GMFCS levels I-III, and in some case for children in GMFCS level IV, for shorter periods of time.  Head control is a prerequisite for using the R82 Scallop and the seat is not appropriate for children who have strong extensor spasticity.  However, in some cases the R82 Scallop might reduce spasticity because of the enclosing support around the pelvis and trunk it provides with hips optimally positioned by use of a wedge. 

Because of its colorful design and crossover application to the typical population, R82 has found that integrating use of the Scallop in social settings promotes integration and socialization. 

The exhibit was organized by Cara McCarty, Curatorial Director of Cooper Hewitt Design Museum and Rochelle Steiner. It will run from December 15, 2017 through September 3, 2018 after which organizers intend to travel the exhibit for approximately 18 months thereafter. R82 Scallop will then travel with the Access+Ability exhibit across the US after its run at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum.

“Cooper Hewitt is committed to accessibility in its broadest sense, with exhibitions and programs that involve communities in thinking about how design can empower users,” said Caroline Braumann, director of the museum. “The diversity of works on view in Access+Ability embrace the latest developments in technologies and fabrication methods, along with a user-drive focus on enhancing what people can do when given the opportunity. In partnership with the New York City Mayor’s Office of People with Disabilities, the exhibition will be accompanied by our first-ever Cooper Hewitt Lab, to further the dialogue about inclusive design.”



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Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum