Christo, Guare Elected to Institute

"Wrap" artist Christo and playwright John Guare are among 10 cultural figures have been elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, an organization chartered by Congress in 1913 as the nation's honor society of the arts.

Christo, 53, whose full name is Christo Javaceff, creates art by wrapping fabric and plastic around things such as islands, buildings and bridges. He was born in Bulgaria and is a naturalized American.

Guare, 50, who wrote the acid comedy play, "House of Blue Leaves," also was acclaimed for his screenplay, "Atlantic City" which won the Venice Film Festival grand prize in 1981.

Others elected: poet and critic Donald Hall, 60; novelist Don DeLillo, 52; historian Peter Gay, 65; Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alison Lurie, 62; painters George McNeil, 80, Agnes Martin, 78, and Jane Freilicher, 64; and composer Ralph Shapey, 67.

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