Rock Stars Aren't the Only Ones

The annual Showtel art exhibit – nay, art happening – just gets curiouser and curiouser. In 2002, curator Kara Walker-Tomé approached the owner of Hotel Biba and asked a little favor: would it be okay if, for one night, artists came in and took over the 43 ultra-chic rooms? Amazingly, the answer was sure, as long as they picked up their toys when they left.

Once a year since then, artists have invaded the hotel and replaced its posh furnishings with installations. Last year, one artist sat on a bed surrounded by sharks and candy; in another room, some heavily tattooed people played poker as “performance art.” Asked for hints about what’s in store this year, Walker-Tomé said that one piece will make viewers feel “like you’re walking into a giant pumpkin” while another “transforms a room into a fleabag motel for Otis Flea-twood, a flea circus performer. Complete with real dog hair.”

In past years, Showtel has been a one-night-only exhibit, but this year it takes place both Thursday (from 6 to 9 p.m.) and Friday (from 7 to 11) at Hotel Biba (320 Belvedere Rd., West Palm Beach). Admission is free. Call 561-832-0094, or visit
April 27-28

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Deirdra Funcheon