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San Diego has a very real issue with homelessness, and I don’t mean just the fact that it exists. It’s that many people choose to ignore it because it makes them uncomfortable.

Now and then, attempts to put a face on homelessness hit home. One of Voice of San Diego’s most powerful series involved emailing with a newly homeless woman named Liz Hirsch as she adjusted to a decidedly more bleak reality. (When we last chatted with Hirsch in May 2013, by the way, she had moved into a transitional housing program.)

Artist Neil Shigley is working toward the same end, highlighting the real people and their real stories with his ongoing series “Invisible People.”

Shigley creates large-scale illustrative portraits of homeless people living on San Diego’s streets. Through his beautifully stark images, Shigley forces us to face those who struggle and survive homelessness on a daily basis.

Shigley tells CityBeat that although he’s been working on this series for seven years, he never feels like it’s complete. The subject matter is too important.

You can see Shigley’s work currently at the Oceanside Museum of Art.

You’re reading the Culture Report, Voice of San Diego’s weekly collection of the region’s cultural news.

Movers and Shakers, Dr. Seuss and More Visual Art Goods

• Riviera Magazine released its Arts and Power issue highlighting the makers, shakers and institutions doing big things in town. Among them are Low Gallery’s Meegan Nolan, MCASD, Collective Magpie, SDMA’s Ariel Plotek and many others.

• Kickstarter isn’t just a place to help fund somebody’s dream of creating a documentary on grilled cheese. Artist Emily Grenader uses the crowdfunding website to connect to people and find subjects for her artwork, while raising some cash. (CityBeat)

• San Diego Museum of Art’s latest exhibition, “Ron Nagle: Peripheral Cognition,” is on view through Feb. 17. The U-T talks to the outspoken artist about his work, family and culture.

• Mingei International Museum’s “Three on the Edge” exhibition gives a million high fives to three of the best architects in San Diego history. (San Diego Magazine)

• We mentioned the San Diego History Center’s Seussian exhibition in last week’s Culture Report. But check out what noted art critic and writer Robert L. Pincus had to say as he delves into the genius of Theodor Geisel, who you know as Dr. Seuss, for San Diego Magazine.

Tiny Doo, Holiday Dos and More Music and Performance Bits

• It’s the most wonderful time of the year, unless you have a rabid fear of Santa Claus. Then it sucks for you. For those of us who proudly don our gay apparel and get mad yuletide, the U-T breaks down all the fun holiday plays, musicals and shows hitting the stage this season.

• The San Diego Youth Symphony is heading to China. (U-T)

• San Diego rapper Tiny Doo is facing a life sentence for recording an album. How is that possible? Check out the piece in Noisey to find out.

Mini City, Major Fashion and More Culture Pieces

• In the latest installment of my CityBeat column, There She Goz, I fight the power of consumerism after visiting Tijuana’s Mini City, a children’s play land that wants to turn your tykes into conformist robots.

• Anyone who doesn’t drink wine from a box (though I have to admit, Target boxed wine is amazing) knows that Baja’s Guadalupe Valley is making a major splash on the international wine scene. The U-T takes you to the valley, sharing the sights, scents and flavors the region has to offer.

• DiscoverSD talks fashion with Allison Andrews, the badass babe behind Fashion Week San Diego.

• The countdown to the opening of Balboa Park’s California Tower begins now. San Diego Magazine has the basic facts on the opening, which will be the first time in eight years that the public can climb its steps. Please, nobody spit off the top, no matter how much you want to. That’s just gross.

• Sip on tea and talk about death at San Diego’s Death Café. BYO neurosis. (KPBS)

Alex Zaragoza

Alex Zaragoza is a freelance writer covering arts and culture in San Diego and Tijuana. She also writes the column "There...

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