Scottish comedian Sir Billy Connolly unveils four new drawings for sale | UK News

Aug 10, 2023 | Entertainment, News


Sir Billy Connolly has unveiled four new artworks for sale.

The much-loved Scottish comedian, 80, has been a keen artist since 2012, and has unveiled the new drawings through the Castle Fine Art gallery.

The pieces have been launched through his Born on a Rainy Day art series and are being sold for £1,250 each – though they can be bought as a set for £4,500 framed or £3,300 unframed.

The pieces are named Pontius Tries Pilates, One Armed Juggler, Nightmare and Drunk Donkey.

“The Big Yin” said he always wanted to give Pontius Pilate a “keep-fit name”, adding the idea came to him when his wife joined a pilates gym.

EMBARGOED TO 1100 THURSDAY AUGUST 10 Undated handout issued by Castle Fine Art of Pontius Tries Pilates, one of four new drawings by comedian Billy Connolly which are being sold through the Castle Fine Art gallery. The four pieces - Pontius Tries Pilates, One Armed Juggler, Nightmare and Drunk Donkey - have been launched through his Born on a Rainy Day art series and are being sold for £1,250 each, or as a set for £4,500 framed or £3,300 unframed. Issue date: Thursday August 10, 2023.
Image:
Pontius Tries Pilates

He added: “I said it would be funny to call it Pontius Pilates, then I thought people would be offended by that, so I fiddled around and I got Pontius Tries Pilates.

“He’s just a guy trying at the gym, trying his best. I don’t understand the whole gymnasium culture, but he does and he’s good.”

On his One Armed Juggler drawing, Sir Billy said: “He’s an example of the fact that most of the figures in my work are doing things that don’t matter. Just doing the things they do, thinking they’ll do you good – I’ve spent my life doing that.”

EMBARGOED TO 1100 THURSDAY AUGUST 10 Undated handout issued by Castle Fine Art of One Armed Juggler, one of four new drawings by comedian Billy Connolly which are being sold through the Castle Fine Art gallery. The four pieces - Pontius Tries Pilates, One Armed Juggler, Nightmare and Drunk Donkey - have been launched through his Born on a Rainy Day art series and are being sold for £1,250 each, or as a set for £4,500 framed or £3,300 unframed. Issue date: Thursday August 10, 2023.
Image:
One Armed Juggler

He added: “You see guys in their 60s out running in the evening and you think: ‘Get a chair. Get a chair and a bottle of beer and switch on the telly; who are you kidding?’.

“But all my guys are doing that, they’re trying to be part of it wherever ‘it’ is.”

The Nightmare piece is inspired by Sir Billy’s own bad dreams, which he says he never really remembers upon waking up.

EMBARGOED TO 1100 THURSDAY AUGUST 10 Undated handout issued by Castle Fine Art of Nightmare, one of four new drawings by comedian Billy Connolly which are being sold through the Castle Fine Art gallery. The four pieces - Pontius Tries Pilates, One Armed Juggler, Nightmare and Drunk Donkey - have been launched through his Born on a Rainy Day art series and are being sold for £1,250 each, or as a set for £4,500 framed or £3,300 unframed. Issue date: Thursday August 10, 2023.
Image:
Nightmare

He said: “But I’m famous for shouting in the night and singing and laughing; my daughter has seen me; I’ve never remembered it.

“And I was directing a play in my sleep. I was talking to the actors and then I would become the actors, singing songs.”

His Drunk Donkey piece hearkens back to his earlier days when he lived in Scotland.

He owned two donkeys who he says he would let “wander about the place eating grass”.

EMBARGOED TO 1100 THURSDAY AUGUST 10 Undated handout issued by Castle Fine Art of Drunk Donkey, one of four new drawings by comedian Billy Connolly which are being sold through the Castle Fine Art gallery. The four pieces - Pontius Tries Pilates, One Armed Juggler, Nightmare and Drunk Donkey - have been launched through his Born on a Rainy Day art series and are being sold for £1,250 each, or as a set for £4,500 framed or £3,300 unframed. Issue date: Thursday August 10, 2023.
Image:
Drunk Donkey

The comedian says the animals are “lovely” and “friendly”, comparing them to dogs.

He added: “They cling to you, they’ve got a real tie to human beings. Donkeys are funny animals but it’s an endearing kind of funny.

“Our donkeys used to escape over the wall of the garden, run down to the village and the villagers would bring them back.

“Donkeys always look drunk and behave drunk. This one’s a friendly looking guy and I think he’s been drunk a few times because he’s got a beer belly on him. And he’s got the drunk legs.”

Read more:
Klimt portrait becomes most expensive artwork auctioned in Europe
Solo Banksy exhibition to be held at Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art

Sir Billy was first inspired to start drawing while on tour in Canada.

He said: “I’d never drawn in my life until this point, but I just started drawing weird islands and carried on drawing.

“I asked my wife to tell me if they were getting better and she said ‘definitely’.

“My manager sent them to the gallery, and now I make pictures and they’re lovely to me.

“And the fact that other people like them and want to live with them in their homes blows me sideways.

“To have somebody who wants a part of your mind in their life – I thought my wife had been the only one to fall for that, but it turns out that she’s not alone.”



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