ARDUINO + FIREFLY = ROTATING PANEL

Hello my name is Matt. I am an architecture student currently working on the design of a patterned wall whose panels rotate in response to user presence. I have just purchased the Arduino Uno Starter Kit and have the plug-in 'Firefly' for Grasshopper which I will be using to program the inputs etc for the sensor.

As I am very new to this type of software and technology, I was wondering if there was any advice that you all could offer me to ensure success? I need to produce a small prototype, perhaps of a couple of panels (circular or diamond shape etc) which rotate around an axis when a user is close enough (i.e. wave hand in front of panel and it rotates). What would be the best materials to use which can be rotated when connected to the Arduino? I've researched SMA wires and wondering if they are the best solution?

Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Best,

Matthew

Are you referring to something to transfer electrical contacts between a stationary object and the rotating part like slip rings?