Arduino - Crystal Ball

My latest art/electronics project uses an Arduino microcomputer to control a sheet of switchable glass. Normally opaque, when an electrical current is applied to switchable glass, it turns transparent.

Using my Arduino, I created a circuit that senses when someone is standing in front of it.

I then made a box out of wood with a plexiglass cover. Using cut vinyl masking, I spray painted the cover to resemble a crystal ball. I affixed a layer of switchable glass over the "ball" portion of the cover and then installed the controller circuit.

From a distance, the box looks like it is decorated with glowing stars and a crystal ball. However, as viewers approach the piece, the circuit activates, making the ball transparent and revealing a scene I created using layers of cut plastic.

Because the box is so highly reflective, the pictures do not do the piece justice.