The Plain Dealer | John Petkovic  |  November 03, 2010

Spaces gallery benefit lets you bring out your inner techie

Wine. Cheese. Carrots.

Whoop. Dee. Doo.

That's what you get at way too many art parties. OK, there's also the added bonus: a crowd of yuppies taking themselves way too seriously.

Well, thank the art gods for the Spaces Annual Benefit & Auction. Each year, the artist-run space -- 2200 Superior Viaduct, Cleveland -- throws a soiree that's an excuse to party in a kooky outfit.

Not to mention spill cocktails all over yourself. Dance like a fool. Act like a clown.

OK, you don't have to do all that. But I had fun doing it last year.

This year's edition is Saturday and boasts a retro-futurist theme: "App to the Future."

"It's a play on the 25th anniversary of 'Back to the Future,' " says party co-organizer Sarah Beiderman, referring to the Michael J. Fox flick. "But we also want to celebrate all the technology happening in Cleveland."

OK, great. But how about the biggest reason?

"The truth is we want to have a lot of fun," she says.


The party will celebrate gadget culture with kitschy props -- like a big computer.

"Whether it works or not is irrelevant," says Beiderman. "It's a game."

The bash also will boast a photo booth that's somehow associated with Facebook -- isn't everything these days? -- though I couldn't grasp exactly how.

"We'll have some things involving Nintendo and Atari," says Beiderman.

Hmm . . . I'm such a klutz with anything technological. Can't even work the remote for the TV. And I'm just now getting around to hoarding supplies for Y2K.

"Spaces has always embraced the exploration of technology in art," says Beiderman. "Plus seeing someone walk in dressed as a robot or carrying one of those big, old cell phones would be funny."

At 6 p.m. Saturday, Spaces will host a VIP gala, which runs $135. The ticket price drops to $45 at 8:30 p.m. It dives to $10 at 10 p.m., when the soiree turns into a dance party. DJs Lawrence Caswell and Chris Kulcsar (of Cleveland rock kings This Moment in Black History) will spin.

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