Catherine Raphaely’s new designer board game, Escape from Samsara, is as stylish as it is spiritually enlightening. The game was recently brought to life by way of an inspiring video production that incorporates local fashion and symbolic Plascon shades corresponding with the various chakra colours.
RAISE YOUR GAME
Think the quest to reach nirvana is a losing game? Enter Escape from Samsara – an intriguing new board game created by Catherine Raphaely.
The concept of the game is based on its namesake, Samsara – a Sanskrit word that refers to the Buddhist notion of the endless wheel of suffering, life, death and rebirth, says Catherine. “The way I see it is that we will keep returning to Earth until we stop repeating our mistakes and start learning our lessons.”
As in life, players enter the game with their preordained karma and must attempt to move up the board by undergoing various chakra challenges. “These include testing ego, psychic ability, yoga prowess and knowledge relating to consciousness, religions and spirituality.”
“THE CHAKRA CHALLENGES’ VISUAL SPACES UTILISE OPTICAL ILLUSIONS TO CREATE INTERESTING EFFECTS, AND SYMBOLISE THE TRICKS OUR MINDS CAN PLAY ON US.”
Karma – good and bad – is the currency of the game. “Players earn both types and can use it to reward, bribe and punish other players.”
The first player to reach the seventh crown chakra, also known as Sahasrara, wins – on condition that they have more good karma in their cosmic bank account than bad.
“COLOUR IS A CENTRAL COMPONENT OF THE CONCEPT, WHICH IS WHY WE CHOSE SPECIFIC PLASCON TONES THAT BEST CORRELATE TO THE CHAKRA COLOURS OF THE GAME.”
The game is comprised of several design elements handmade locally and is available in an entry-level and high-end variant, which includes gold-plated good karma beans, crystals to represent the players, and bags by Missibaba.
“WE WANTED SOPHISTICATED COLOURS THAT WERE VIBRANTLY JEWEL-LIKE IN THEIR INTENSITY, WITH AN ELEMENT OF DARKNESS – JUST LIKE LIFE.”
Catherine collaborated with Plascon to bring the game to life through a video production that showcases it in a fictitious space. The colours are based on the seven chakra colours: red, orange (coral), yellow, green, blue, indigo and purple.
FEATURED IMAGE: Creator of Escape from Samsara, Catherine Raphaely – atop a life-size replica of the kaleidoscopic board game painted by Paintiques – is dressed in Xhosa-inspired knitwear by Laduma Ngxokolo. Photograph by Mary-Anne Grobler.
PHOTOGRAPHS: KATINKA BESTER
PRODUCTION AND STYLING: CATHERINE RAPHAELY
STYLING, HAIR AND MAKE-UP: WANIDA KEEPING
WALL PAINT TECHNIQUES: FREYA LINCOLN, CALVIN HOBBS PEARCE,TIMOTHY GOODMAN, MIKE CHISIN, JULIA & ILARIA LOUW OF PAINTIQUES
WORDS: ASHRAF BOOLEY