This piece was auctioned as part of WPA’s 2020 auction, “High Frequency”.

What is it?

This piece has a large, handmade array of small, numeric displays that show a sequence of numbers.

Using its infrared and microwave motion sensors, it watches for nearby people.

After a certain amount of movement is observed, it slowly fades to a videogame-style display of a car driving along a winding road.

How was it made?

I designed and fabricated this artwork. The circuit boards were fabricated to my design by a PCB factory. I also started with a powder-painted steel enclosure which required machining.

I sourced components and assembled the boards by hand with a hot-air rework station. I wrote the software and drivers, and filled it with artwork that I collaged and painted.

Technical information

There are 336 individual vintage numeric displays attached to 14 display boards, which each have their own display controller (ISSI IS31FL3733). I designed these boards and wrote the Python driver software for their display controllers. A Raspberry Pi 3 computer runs my software, which turns a pixel grid into the very different display signals needed for the 336 numeric displays. The multiprocess software uses interprocess communication (pipes and queues) to synchronize signaling for a deep framebuffer and communicate with its peripherals.

More about its technology and creation on


Hackaday: “Bask in the Glory of This 336 LED Digit Display” “A 336-Digit 7-Segment Matrix Display” WPA “High Frequency” WPA “High Frequency” print catalog

How was it made?


    WPA High Frequency
    July 30--August 13, 2020, online, benefiting Washington Project for the Arts.





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