UC San Diego Participants:

James Chiu
Oskar Contreras
Jonathan Flike
Jose Gomez
Manny Guerrero
Jonathan Quiroz
Eliza Kim
Breanna Klein
Bhagwant Kuar
Samantha Ko
Vanessa Magallon
Weston Matthews
April Phuong
Tyler Pitruzzello
Joel Polizzi
Jack Toczyski
Tho Tran
Ashley Trinh
Alexander Uhler

Ash Eliza Smith
Pepe Rojo

38 Parallel
Eliza Kim

My dance video project reacts to the surrounding truth that we are divided. This 20 minute clip portrays the division in borders, a physical border and metallic bars. The awkwardness exists in the person who enforces the barrier not the person on the opposite side of the barrier. The understanding that exists on each side is that they love each other. They want to see each other; they want to talk to each other.
Does divided mean separated? How do we stand on the right side? Now, the two Koreas are divided but it was separated since the war during the war. So what is the future of the Edgeland? Do Mexico and the USA go separate ways? And who loves who?


Eliza Kim is a Korean-American filmmaker. She grew up on a pig farm in a small town near Gimpo city, and Hollywood, Los Angeles after that. She eats tofu and almonds. In her spare time, she babysits and tutors Spanish. Eliza is a graduating senior at UC San Diego.

The Branded Edge
Jonathan Flike

Edgelands mark the distinction between worlds very different from one another. Edgeland Futurism looks at the differences in those worlds as they relate to their respective futures. “The Branded Edge” looks at familiar branding, blurs the edges of the familiar, and creates a new world where old branding and new branding are made to reflect upon their influence from their respective edge. In The Branded Edge, The idea of Edgelands are explored through the scope of marketing. Since the birth of marketing, it has been used as a tool to convince, coerce, and change people’s perceptions of products, services, and people. In different geographic regions, the marketing and branding for a multinational changes based on the demographics and psychographics of its people. The marketing for Coca-Cola for example, is different in Mexico from the United States as the company attempts to blend into the culture it is selling to by mimicking its ideals and value system. Therefore, by placing an American marketing campaign and its European counterpart next to each other, we are given sister branding that mark the key differences to the cultures and people multinationals market to. These differences are the ingredients that make up Edgelands. These campaigns are not fully representative of one culture or the other, but instead are shadows of something authentic. This branding limbo is a corporate Edgeland that lives on the edges of many countries and cultures, never truly belonging to any of them. What will advertisements be like in the future? As long as humanity is similar to what it has been for the last few hundred years, then the advertisements, marketing, and branding will be familiar as well. The future of branding will look very much like the past. Distinct color palettes unique to their respective multinational, catchy taglines, and empathetic explanations why Product A and not Product B should be in your home. The Branded Edge takes familiar branding and tweaks them for future services. Perhaps people don’t need to ship as much as FedEx would like them to in the future so they adapt and offer assisted suicide services that have become all the rage with the legalization of it across all fifty states. The future should look familiar, but ultimately the branded edge looks at the future of familiar brands and questions how these multinationals would ensure their survival in a brave new world.


Jonathan Flike is a writer, artist, and starving student. His poems have appeared in Dirty Chai, Emerge Literary Journal, Wilde Magazine, and other literary journals. Jonathan’s first novel Standards and Practices was published in August 2009 and his first major collection of poetry, Tales from Room 225, was published in June 2011. His second major poetry collection It Only Gets Worse is set for publication in August 2014. He currently lives in La Jolla, California where he attends the University of California, San Diego majoring in biochemistry/cellular biology.

Jon Q and James C

Tired of the old you? Wish you were born a different race? A different skin color? Here at BetterVU we strive to make you who you want to be. Not satisfied with your boring biological limbs? Have no fear, we got you covered. Utilizing the latest in body augmentation, we have everything you need to change who you are. The ways of conventional plastic surgery and liposuction are gone.
Located in Biotech Beach, BetterVU was founded with the belief that natural-ness is what we want to make it. People adapt and adjust to the world as it evolves. With that in mind, your body is what you want to make it. Beauty and fashion are forever changing. What is strange and mysterious now may become the next hot topic. We are here to help. We are the future of the body modification industry.
Here we will give you a quick demo of the process in which we begin transforming your body. From choosing parts off a catalog and seeing all the options to a digital preview of your choices, we are offering a sample of what you can expect from our company.


Jonathan Quiroz is a media major at UC San Diego with an interest in animation technologies.
James Chiu is a psychology major at UC San Diego with an interest in human social interactions and disorders.

ReCulturalization Regime App
Manny Guerrero

Would we feel the emptiness inside if we lost all culture and were not aware of its massive influence on our past? Would our ears yearn for music, and our thoughts fight to be expressed? This utopia (arguably) is devoid of culture, completely. Social extremists during World War III concluded that aspects of the human condition caused all conflict. Racism, greed, pride, carelessness, love, rebellion… They believed and convinced millions that culture was the basis of these characteristics mankind had suffered through till the bloody, fiery end. They created a new society. Races were no more, and slavery wasn’t even fathomable. Rationalism ruled, and justice and equality dominated. Education became stricter. Peace and progress ensued… but at what cost? In the process, libraries were burned, art was destroyed, music smashed, deleted and forgotten, buildings torn down… what made us humans… censored and exterminated. That was 60 years ago. Failed brain wipes of the leftover followers left a new generation of ignorance, knowing only what the Academies taught. Edgelands often create areas of extreme control and censorship. This application is part of a hypothetical society that is a bubble. This self quarantined collective creates miles edges for the intrusion of information and influences from the past. The ReCulturalization Regime is attempting to burst that bubble, dissolving the edge by releasing this software amongst the people, free to share, and curiosity quenching…. Let The Enlightenment begin. Our current world has many issues due to the conflict of issues of cultures. Must we really lose everything to finally understand how to love our neighbor and embrace differences? Though culture is not to blame, an extremist in a world at war may see an opportunity, or find it as a scapegoat of the human condition. The sad reality is that it is not our cultures, or our need for resources that bring us to conflict… it is just us, and a lack of awareness.


Manny Guerrero - ICAM Vis Arts/Music, Business
Manny is also graduating and is planning on using his marketing experience and sense for aesthetics to continue in the business world and return to school to receive his MBA.

Fearing Fear
Breanna Klein & Oskar Contreras

Our project is located in the edgeland futurism as we are promoting and advertising the removal of the amygdala-a structure in the brain that is associated with fear, which is a common emotion associated with hate. Our project blurs the identification of each individual’s race, gender, etc. and eliminates any possibility of hate. Our edgeland is faceless, nameless, raceless, and genderless. Identification is blurry with our project because it is irrelevant to the content of your character. Love is identification-less and that is our emphasis. The future of our world depends on the elimination of hate and all emotions related to it (such as fear) so the removal of your amygdala saves everyone on our planet. We both decided to work together to meet in the middle between hard science and social science to eliminate something we both know is hindering the progression of a better world-hate.


Breanna Klein - Sociology with an emphasis in social inequality and minor in Psychology.
Oskar Contreras - Computer science

GenSex: Your Life. Your Choice
April Phuong and Samantha Ko

Ready to choose your life? GenSex is here to help. Once you have made your choice, we will provide all the necessary materials to make your transition run smoothly. Our genetically modified fruit extracts will provide you with the life you choose, the life you want. Your gender matters. Your choices matter. Take control of your life now. In our society, there is an identity that is imposed on us (class, race, gender, nationality, sexual orientation, etc.). Our gender and sexual orientation, especially, are constantly being policed, controlled, examined, and restricted within a binary. What if we were able to take full control of that aspect in our life? What if multiple genders and sexual orientations exist and we were able to choose the life we wanted? Gender and sexual orientation do not exist within a binary, but it is seen that way in our society. The majority of today’s population also believe that sexual orientation is a choice. That if you are of female gender your preference is of the opposite sex and vice versa. That isn’t always the case. Gensex attempts to blur these edges and erase the binary between the two. We create a world where your gender and sexual orientation becomes your choice once you reach a certain age. It then becomes a medical process involving medical procedures and treatment. We chose incorporate genetically modified exotic fruit as our main ingredient for the transition treatment to signify how "different" and "out-of-the-norm" these "life choices" are.


April Phuong - Cognitive Science with a specialization in Human Computer Interaction. My interests lie in learning more about how people interact with their world. More specifically, I’m interested in how people use interfaces to interact with objects and these experiences can be improved.
Samantha Ko - Visual Arts ICAM (Interdisciplinary Computing and the Arts Major). My main focus is to learn about interactive art/ technology and incorporate it into the marketing industry.

The Seven Articles of Humanism
Tyler Pitruzzello

1) We believe that a God created human life and he intended that it should not last
2) We believe that humans were created in God’s image and as such, should not
partake in enhancements, be they biological, mechanical, or neurological.
3) We believe that the Earth was created for us and we should not harm it or
mistreat any of its inhabitants.
4) We believe that death is a beautiful thing, and that too fully understand our
human lives we must embrace it whenever it may come.
5) We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in
obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.
6) We believe in being honest, true, virtuous, and doing good to all humankind.
7) We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and God will be just
when we enter the afterlife to greet him.

There is beauty in mortality. You can not know joy without know despair. You can not know life without death. If there is always tomorrow we will never take advantage of today. Life can never begin it does not have an end. Tonight, our honored guests, we invited you into our beliefs. You have all been chosen to attend tonight. All of you have the chance to win tonight, and if chosen you wOhill be offered the gift of death. Please prepare yourself, prepare your loved ones, prepare your estate, and rejoice in our mortality.


Tyler Had long been interested in his own mortality and as such had tried to make the most of his short time here on this Earth. When trans-humanism began to gain traction in the US he became increasingly distressed. Finally in 2052 when Dr. Kurzweil’s team finally broke through the death algorithm Tyler knew he must do something. He knew he was receiving his calling and as such he organized the church of Humanism. He has been leading its ever since and not much is known about what will happen when he eventually dies.

Botanex Corporation: Organic Infrastructure Department
Manny, Tisha, Weston, Vanessa, Jose

The main objective of Botanex Corp. is to introduce sustainable alternatives to construction and infrastructure materials. Botanex’s Organic Infrastructure has two main departments, transportation and construction. Using genome re-coding and engineering, the first product offered is the Orbitron, a destination programmable vehicle, made of durable plant material, operating entirely on solar energy. The vehicle reaches a max speed of up to 100 mph, and is completely self-repairing and self-maintaining, granted it is watered. The Orbitron comes in three different sizes and are grown immediately upon order. The Orbitron charges its internal battery while activated in the daylight, experiencing no net energy loss while operating in sunlight. In a dark setting operation, the Orbitron has a max range of 120 miles. The second product offered by Botanex is seedling infrastructure. The seedlings grow into bridges and buildings that are sprouted to specified dimensions and capacities. Our engineers design the seedling infrastructures depending on locations and expected types of loading. Seedling infrastructures are self-repairing and self-maintaining, when given proper nourishment. While regular construction practices require a team of workers and typically take months for the full erection of the building, a given Sprout infrastructure takes a week to finish, and only requires two engineers to supervise the growth process. This type of construction not only alleviates the stress construction processes cause on a city, but also the contamination induced by them. Botanex Corp. has a mission to reverse CO2 emissions from the construction industry and to produce high quality efficient products which work in sync with nature.


Jose Gomez - Structural Engineer
Jose will graduate at the end of the spring quarter and will continue graduate education in SDSU. Jose hopes to become a design engineer and ultimately receive his SE credentials, this will allow him to have the final decision on construction plans.
Manny Guerrero - ICAM Vis Arts/Music, Business
Manny is also graduating and is planning on using his marketing experience and sense for aesthetics to continue in the business world and return to school to receive his MBA.
Weston Matthews - Physics, Studio Art
A young artist with a passion for science, science fiction, and philosophy, Weston has helped shape his community through outreach and mentoring. He plans to work towards a master’s degree and, eventually, a PhD and become a leader in the growing field of humanoid robotics.

The Edgeland Inquirer
Jack Toczyski

A newspaper is an artifact that we use to learn and understand the present, to interact with the world of today. The Edgeland Inquirer is a newspaper from the future, in many ways, it is familiar - but instead of creating an interaction between the reader and the world of today, it creates and interaction between the reader and the world of the future. The Edgeland Inquirer “makes the strange familiar and the familiar strange,” increasing the immediacy and the reality of the other Edgeland projects in the exhibit. “Forest”: “Forest” is a story of wandering in the today and finding the future. This piece is a visual and textual narrative describing an ordinary walk taking an unexpected turn when the walker comes upon a strange Edgeland of nature and city.


Jack Toczyski is a student of Mathematics and Economics at U.C. San Diego. When Jack Toczyski was born, it was discovered that his genetic code contained the only recorded case of immunity to malaria. His childhood went largely undocumented, but it is said amongst the indigenous populations of inner Brazil that he was "raised amongst the coyotes." After bringing home Olympic gold medals in both figure skating and the shot put, Jack finished his doctoral work on the containment of nuclear technologies, a work which was, at the time, considered to be groundbreaking, and is to this day cited by most Non-Proliferation Treaties. His efforts in reintroducing the North American Grey Bat after its population fell to endangered levels is thought to make him an early frontrunner for a Nobel Prize this year, and has drawn recognition from Mother Teresa, who was quoted as saying, "Jack Toczyski? Yeah, I love that guy."

The Near Future
Ashley Trinh

The Near Future —“near” means both “a short distance away” as well as “a short time away in the future”— is a photoseries about the future of the San Diego-Tijuana region. However, the images are not a literal prediction of what the future will be; they are intended to function as representational warnings as to what the future could be. There are no flying cars, force fields, or strangely shaped buildings in these photos. In fact, the settings in the photos are bland and mundane—we can definitely tell that they are photos from the present. Despite the familiarity of the photographs, they definitely seem strange; the signs in the photos resemble ones we are familiar with, but on closer examination, they mention cyborgs, bioengineered slime, and omnipresent drones, indications that this is actually the future. By abandoning cliche representations of the future and opting for a more subtle one, the artist offers us a future that is decidedly mundane despite its fantastic advances in technology. The mundane settings frame the futuristic signs, so that they become portents that warn us of a future that is simply a reiteration of the past—just with the extra bells and whistles of advanced technology. This is a future that rejects the fastest high-speed internet, the smallest smartphone ever, and the most intelligent self-driving car. This is a future that rejects ones that have been dreamt up with Silicon Valley-studded eyes, futures that excitedly report that we will be able to upload our minds to computers by 2045, without mentioning that those futures are reserved for the upper middle class. This is a future that is not the future, not if there are people who care enough to do something about it.


Ashley Trinh is an artist from the San Francisco Bay Area who is studying Interdisciplinary Computing and the Arts and Human-Computer Interaction at UCSD.

Alexander Uhler

This is an allegory for the abandonment, habitation and re-abandonment of a commercial plaza in the Edgeland. Through movement in space, the temporality of the dancers, the temporality of the history of the space and the temporality of the future are collapsed along with the layout of the area. Featuring: Illce Montserrat Molina, Vale Rodriguez, Harold Garcia Sandoval and Paulina Guajardo

30 CEFs
These are 30 photographs produced in both black and white and color film. The series is speculative in its attempt to collapse the expansive locations within the Edgeland region into one set of recognizable visual stimuli.


Alexander Uhler is a Visual Arts student at UC San Diego.

Pop Culture as a Drug
Tho Tran

In an edgeland setting where drug abuse is so common, it’s perfectly normal to see people randomly taking pills, liquids, etc. Also in a futuristic setting, the development of drugs has gone so far that it’s actually quite surprising to not be able to treat an illness. Side effects will always exist for drugs, but what if the drug were to go bad? Let us say the most common drug being taken went bad, causing our subconscious cultures and customs to take form. That’s where pop culture comes in play. Society has been overexposed to pop culture over the generations, but what exactly is pop culture? I will answer that question with music and dance. Converse with one of the many dancers, and see as certain trigger words cause us to break out into certain dance moves.


Tho Tran – Pharmacological Chemistry.
I’m interested in the development of drugs and their pharmacokinetics and effects on the body.