Super Bardo by Priyesh T

'Super Bardo' is a crossover series that intertwines two seemingly disparate worlds: the iconic 'Super Mario' universe and the esoteric 'Bardo Thodol,' also known as 'The Tibetan Book of the Dead.'

The series follows Mario's disembodied journey after his in-game demise, where the last fragments of his consciousness traverse the Bardo stages, encountering visions of his life, experiences, and fears.

This visually pixelated odyssey draws inspiration from the symbolisms of 'Thangka' art and the retro 8-bit iconography of the game, crafting a metafictional narrative exploring themes of life, death, and rebirth.

Beneath the layers of popular culture and nostalgia, the works aim to initiate an internal dialogue in the viewer's mind, delving into existential ideas. Mario finds himself trapped in an endless cycle of life, death, and rebirth within a deterministic world governed by code, subject to the whims of players who control the code at their discretion. The only true awareness of existence arises when the code runs, and any sense of meaning and purpose stems from acting within the confines of the code itself.

In the grand scheme of this perpetual cycle, does everything ultimately become absurd? Is liberation even conceivable? What does this endless loop reveal about the real world and the dissonance between free will and determinism? And, one must ponder, is the princess truly worth saving?

Dates: 11th Jan - 11th Feb 2024

Venue: Method Kala Ghoda