Billy Connolly

Born: Glasgow
Lives and works: Los Angeles, USA
Awards: CBE (2017), BAFTA Scotland (2012), Freedom of Glasgow (2010)
Exhibitions: People's Palace (2015)
“Art, for me, bears no relation to comedy or music. My art is pure and unjudged; I am creating it for myself.”

With a BAFTA award and knighthood under his belt, Billy is a creative force to be reckoned with. The comedian, musician, presenter and actor added a new string to his bow in 2012: fine art.


After working as a welder in Glaswegian shipyards in the 1960s, Billy became a folk singer and comedian. He has also appeared in films like Indecent Proposal (1993), Mrs. Brown(1997) and Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004).

Fondly known as 'The Big Yin', his 75th birthday was celebrated in 2017 with three portraits by leading artists Jack Vettriano, John Byrne and Rachel Maclean. These were later turned into part of Glasgow's official mural trail. In October the same year, he was knighted at Buckingham Palace by Prince William. 

Billy’s technique is similar to that of Surrealist automatism, whereby the artist allows their hand to move freely without a concept in mind. His art has also been likened to cave paintings from the Aurignacian period (40,000-25,000 BC). While his characters are anonymous, their charming simplicity is undeniable.

Billy says: “Art, for me, bears no relation to comedy or music. My art is pure and unjudged; I am creating it for myself.”

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Inside the world of Billy Connolly

Here's a taste of what the artist has been up to recently! To make sure you stay up-to-date with all of our news, follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

From the blog

New digital issue of Fine Art Collector

No plans for the weekend? Here’s your Plan B - the brand-new issue of our magazine! Featuring the best of contemporary art, interviews with our artists and a visit to Steve Winterburn's studio, it's a must-read!

A sweet collaboration to support the NHS

Edinburgh-based artisan chocolatier releases a limited edition chocolate bars featuring artwork by Sir Billy Connolly to raise funds for the NHS.

Magazines and brochures

Fine Art Collector | 2020

Showcasing the very best of our artworks, along with behind-the-scenes updates and interviews, the new issue of our Fine Art Collector magazine is a must-read!

Billy Connolly | Born On A Rainy Day (2020)

The award-winning comedian Billy Connolly has returned with the fifth instalment of his sell-out Born On A Rainy Day series, which reflects his legendary sense of humour and boasts an increased use of colour and Billy's first-ever sculpture. 

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