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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 February 2006, 16:31 GMT
Sculptor Whiteread receives CBE
Rachel Whiteread
Sculptor Rachel Whiteread lives and works in London
Artist Rachel Whiteread and playwright Sir Arnold Wesker have received honours from the Queen at Buckingham Palace.

Whiteread, who collected a CBE, creates large installations including her current work at Tate Modern, which consists of 14,000 arranged boxes.

"It's very good to be able to honour art in this way," she said.

Sir Arnold has written 42 plays, including Roots, Chips with Everything and Shylock, as well as short story collections and essays.

He recently adapted Dava Sobel's award-winning book Longitude for the stage.

The 73-year-old from Hay-on-Wye was knighted for his services to drama.

Holocaust memorial

Whiteread, 42, studied at the Slade art school in London and is a leading light in the modern art world.

She won the Turner Prize in 1993 with House, her version of the interior of a condemned terrace house in east London using plaster.

Holocaust marked the 65,000 Austrian Jews killed by the Nazis

She also designed a Holocaust memorial in Vienna in 2000, casting a library, complete with the imprint of books.

Whiteread said it had been "a bit bizarre" to receive her honour from the Queen.

She said: "The Queen said 'You make sculptures?' and she asked if they were shown all over world.

"I said 'Yes, Your Majesty'."

The artist said she was most proud of House and the Holocaust memorial piece.

Royal approval

"I think they engaged the public in a way that's very difficult to do with art.

Arnold Wesker
Sir Arnold's plays have been translated into 17 languages

"They were both quite political and people were profoundly affected by them."

Her Embankment installation at the Tate Modern is made up of white boxes stacked in the vast Turbine Hall gallery.

Playwright Sir Arnold, whose other works include the plays The Four Seasons and Groupie, said the Queen had asked if he was still writing.

He said: "I said I can't stop. She said 'Well that's a very good reason to carry on'."

Sir Arnold said he was delighted to receive the accolade.

"I feel it's an honour from my peers," he said.

The writer said he had recently penned a 15-minute play for broadcast on BBC Radio 3.

Tate unveils 14,000-box sculpture
10 Oct 05 |  Entertainment
Defining moments: Arnold Wesker
10 Jul 03 |  Entertainment
Turner winner to fill Tate hall
03 Mar 05 |  Entertainment
Trafalgar Square sculpture unveiled
04 Jun 01 |  Entertainment
Whiteread's 'hands-on' approach
03 Jun 01 |  Entertainment


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