Born in Paisley in 1940, John studied at Glasgow School of Art from 1958 to 1963.
A multi-talented creative figure, his output is a daunting one to try to encapsulate. He interweaves writing and design for stage and screen with highly idiosyncratic, enviably fluent and astonishingly imaginative illustration, printmaking and painting which often with have strong autobiographical / self portrait content.
His writings similarly often have strong autobiographical content. Highlights include “The Slab Boys Trilogy”, “Tutti Frutti” , “Your Cheating Heart” and “Colquhoun and MacBryde.”
Byrne’s paintings are held in major collections in Scotland and abroad. Several of his works hang in The Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh and the Museum of Modern Art and the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow, where his 1970s portrait of Billy Connolly hangs in the People’s Palace.
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