i already have the 2 matrixes, but im unsure of what other hardware i need to complete the project.
The boards have drivers built in and are designed to be daisy-chained so you don't need any more hardware.
i also want to use batteries as the power source. any recommendations on which battery would work best (AA/AAA/9v)?
The displays are rated 0.5A Average and 1.37A Max. For two that's 1.0 to 2.74A. That's 5.0 to 13.7 Watts. Multiply that by the number of hours you want to go between battery replacements. Let's say 8 hours. That's 40 to 109.6 Wh. Lets call it 100 Watt Hours.
You can string three AA Alkaline cells together in series to get 4.5V which is probably close enough.. Each string of AA cells you put in parallel adds abut 2 Ah (9 Wh) so you will need about 11 strings in parallel to be assured of lasting about 8 hours. That's 33 cells to be replaced every 8 hours of operation.
If you switch to D cells you get 16 Ah (72 Wh) per string of three. Two strings of three should be plenty, assuming they can discharge at that rate.
Now you know why portable devices almost always use LCD displays.