When a gallery called Space has a warehouse as a blank canvas for a party theme during the 50th anniversary of “2001: A Space Odyssey,” expect the offbeat.

“How do we mix the weirdness of David Bowie glam with the vision of Stanley Kubrick in a party?” asked Space Executive Director Kelsey Johnson about theme of the event, called A Space Oddity. “This was a really exciting opportunity to have a space we could transform with artists’ vision. And doing it here on the peninsula, ending with a late-night dance party with a $20 donation, we’re happy that Space’s music audience will feel welcome.”

After a couple years of fundraising parties on Little Diamond Island, the annual Space fundraiser moved to a secret location disclosed to ticket purchasers one day in advance: a usually quiet warehouse on Cassidy Point in Portland. “This has been the end of the known universe here, and to see it all gussied up is incredible,” said Cyrus Hagge, the real estate developer and Space board member who donated the space for the Sept. 8 charity event.

Traveling oral history blogger Galen Koch of The First Coast parked her Airstream in a former vehicle detailing bay and outfitted it with sufficient tinfoil to deem it futuristic. Site-specific works by artists “Neon” Dave Johansen, Tyler Ryan, Clint Fulkerson and Irina Skornyakova, along with celestial sounds by DJs Mosart212 and Che Ros, completed the transformation.

“Space is championing the work of contemporary artists,” said board vice president Jessica Tomlinson of Portland. “They’re providing performance space, grant funds and affordable studio space.”

An employee at Maine College of Art, Tomlinson spoke of how the whole spectrum of art is found within just a few blocks of downtown Portland: MECA educating artists, Space featuring emerging artists and Portland Museum of Art focusing on established artists.

“Space is probably one of the most diverse venues in town in terms of different artists,” said board member Sarah Schindler of Portland. “You can see a bizarre documentary one night and your favorite touring band the next night.”

Amy Paradysz is a freelance writer and photographer based in Scarborough. She can be reached at:

[email protected]

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