Giles Bunch makes art about people’s expectations of enjoyment, relationships of gifting and obligation and explores perceived values placed on different aspects of social interaction. He does this through performance, singing, video, spoken word, hand-drawn text, and embarrassing himself.
It's Not A Better Song, It's Just A Different Song
It’s Not A Better Song, It’s Just A Different Song is a performance in which visitors to a space can have a song performed for them on request by a friend or relative also present. Audience members make a request for a song of their choosing, the lyrics of which are searched for using an internet connection and printed out. The person for which the song is requested is then searched out in the space and the song performed for them. The title is an indirect quote from a scene in Educating Rita in which Frank Bryant asks of Rita “learned to sing a better song have we? No, you just learned to sing a different song.” The performance explores ideas of plurality and taste and calls into question what it is that determines whether a cultural artifact is deemed ‘good’ or ‘valuable’. The performed song acts as a gift from one person to another within a space at a specific time. Whilst on the surface the gesture appears convivial, there is potential for feelings of embarrassment or awkwardness to colour the situation whilst the potential for the ‘unwelcome gift’ is present throughout.