A NEW exhibition showcasing the artwork of Billy Connolly is to go on display in the People's Palace.

The exhibition opens on Friday and runs until February 21 next year. It will feature more than 4o0 pieces of art from the Big Yin with "meditative drawings" from 2012 onwards.

Billy said: “I don’t want them to be judged. I didn’t want to put them in a position where people would like or dislike them. They’re little pals of mine. I’ll always draw, I’ll always do it.”

Together with the drawings, objects from Glasgow Museums’ collection relating to Billy’s early career as a comedian and musician will be on display. They include the famous Big Banana Boots which were were designed and made for Billy Connolly in 1975 by the Glasgow pop artist Edmund Smith. The boots made their first appearance on stage 40 years ago at the Music Hall in Aberdeen. They then appeared in and lent their name to the film ‘Big Banana Feet’, directed by Murray Grigor and David Peat, which documented Billy’s 1975 tour of Ireland.

Sadie Docherty, Lord Provost of Glasgow, said: “Billy Connolly needs no introduction to the people of Glasgow. His boundless talent as a comedian, actor and presenter makes him one of Scotland’s most famous sons. Five years ago Mr Connolly was made a Freeman of the City of Glasgow, so it is fitting that his extraordinary works of art are to be displayed in Glasgow for the city’s people and visitors to enjoy.”

Chairman of Glasgow Life, Councillor Archie Graham, said: “We are delighted to welcome Mr Connolly’s art to Glasgow Museums. Visitors to Art of Billy Connolly will be pleasantly surprised by what they find - the exhibition reveals an aspect of Billy’s talent that they may not be aware of. Displayed alongside the art works will be a selection of memorabilia from Billy’s early career, these items are some of the most popular exhibits at the People’s Palace, making it the perfect venue for this exhibition.”

More than 40 original Billy Connolly artworks will be on show at the exhibition.

Among other objects on show include a purple satin costume with gold Lurex star worn by Billy on stage, a guitar made out of White Horse Whisky box and various memorabilia including programmes for ‘The Billy Connolly Show 74’ at the Pavilion and the 1976 play ‘An Me Wi’ A Bad Leg Tae’ for Borderline Theatre.

There will also be some examples of the artists early recordings including ‘Welly Boot Song’ single, released in 1974 and in the charts early the following year, and an album cover for ‘Billy Connolly Live!’ recorded at City Hall Glasgow on 6th August 1972.

Also on display will be the ‘Billy’ stamp from the set recently published by the Royal Mail showing famous British comedians.

A selection of limited edition prints of Billy’s drawings will be available to buy at the People’s Palace and Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. There will also be a range of Billy Connolly themed items on sale exclusive to Glasgow Museums.