It seems like we hear more about the divides than the things that bring us closer together. There’s nothing wrong with that. Maintaining an open discourse on race, religion, gender and politics (the things that typically divide us) is how we evolve as a society. Too often, though, that discourse veers into ugly territory.

That’s why the Museum of Photographic Art’s latest exhibition, “7 Billion Others,” is so important. The multimedia exhibition features video portraits of people across various ages, ethnicities, geographies, genders and economic categories. Each person involved was asked the same 45 questions, yielding 6,000 interviews performed for the project. The end result is a snapshot of the ties that bind people.

KPBS sat down with project creator Yann Arthus-Bertrand and project manager Gallit Kenan, who was also one of the people interviewed for “7 Billion Others.” They talk about the interview process, what they learned and what billions of others could gain by viewing the exhibition. Someone get Rush Limbaugh on the horn and hook him up with some tickets, please.

The show runs through Sept. 13 at MoPA.

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

Sparks, Whimsy and More Visual Art Goods

North Park artist Sam Ballard is so over North Park after the destruction of one of his installations. (CityBeat)

The fully renovated Sparks Gallery is opening March 1, and from what I hear the space is absolutely amazing. Read all about its first exhibition in CityBeat.

Garden art is downright whimsical at The Magical Circle. (U-T)

Grift, Bach and More Music and Performance News

 The La Jolla Playhouse’s “The Grift” is the theater company’s next step in experimental, participatory theater as part of its Without Walls program. The “Clue”-like performance will have you talking about flames on the side of your face.

The San Diego Symphony has named a new chief of staff.  Never heard that title? That’s because it’s new too. (U-T)

 In more classical music news, the Bach Collegium has hired its first executive director. (U-T)

 Directors of the San Diego Opera’s staging of “Don Giovanni” hope you give the minimalist version of the piece a thoughtful listen, as there’s more to Mozart’s famed piece than we usually see and hear (KPBS). Bonus: San Diego Story tells us sex is the hook, but not the real story of the famed opera.

 The future of San Diego dance might lie in the winners who were discovered at the San Diego Young Choreographers Showcase and Prize. (San Diego Story)

Oates (Not the Hall Kind), Kaaboo and More Culture Pieces

Prolific author Joyce Carol Oates talks with the U-T about writing, race and the importance of an encouraging review.  She’ll have more to say this Thursday at Point Loma Nazarene University, where she’ll speak as part of its annual Writer’s Symposium by the Sea.

 A newly discovered manuscript of Dr. Seuss’ that was discovered can now make a home on your bookshelf. (U-T)

 My CityBeat column There She Goz pays homage to house shows staged in living rooms, inspired by Vanguard Culture’s Foodie Soiree, which I recently attended.

San Diego Magazine lists the best neighborhoods to live in. Woefully left off the list is my ‘hood, Golden Hill. But that might be because of the never-ending construction danger zone the area has become as of late. Luckily, Turko is on the case.

 Del Mar is hoping to give Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza and other stupidly-named festivals a run for its money with September’s Kaaboo music festival. CityBeat music editor Jeff Terich lends a critical eye to the lineup, which includes The Killers, No Doubt, Zac Brown Band and a weird mish-mash of other acts.

 Last week, I wrote about the Barrio Seed Bank and the grassroots work that’s been going into changing Barrio Logan’s status as a food desert. I neglected to mention the co-founder of the project, Daletron Eblacas. He serves as the gardener and seed trader behind the project as well as the curator. “Together, Bob Green and I aim to change the neighborhood from the ground up,” Eblacas said.

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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