A prominent example of Wang’s monumental calligraphic abstraction, this hanging scroll features powerfully inked lines that convey a vivid sense of the artist’s physical engagement with the work. The interaction of ink and ground—especially the spatters and streaks that communicate the impact and momentum of the brush—is crucial to its appreciation. The white paper is not simply the absence of ink, it is the picture “space” into which Wang’s ink structure is thrust. The title, borrowed from a phrase in the Daoist classic Zhuangzi (ca. 300 B.C.), refers to a state of enlightenment achieved through ridding one’s mind of mundane trifles. Its literal meaning, however, “protect the white” (shou bai), may also reflect Wang’s awareness of the uninked paper as a significant component of the whole.
The Phillips Hydraulic Computer (known as Monetary National Income Analogue Computer or MONIAC in the U.S.) was an hydro-mechanical computer created in 1949 by Professor Bill Phillips to model the economic processes of the United Kingdom. The 2 metres tall analogue computer used the movement of coloured water around a system of tanks, pipes, sluices and valves to represent the stocks and flows of a national economy. The flow of water (which symbolized money) between the tanks (which stood for specific national expenses, such as health or education) was determined by economic principles and the settings for various parameters. Different economic parameters, such as tax rates and investment rates, could be entered by setting the valves which controlled the flow of water about the computer. Users could experiment with different settings and note the effect on the model.
You can find out more from We Make Money Not Art here, plus scans from an old copy of Fortune about the computer here