13 famous people who are also artists, from Brad Pitt to King Charles III

Many notables are multitalented, and here are a few – from actors and singers to royals and world leaders – who showcase their skills in art, sculpture and pottery

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Unbeknown to many fans, plenty of famous people, from actors and royals to singers and politicians, possess some seriously impressive artistic skills.

Scroll through the gallery above to see art from Britney Spears, Lucy Liu, George W Bush and more

Bullet Train star Brad Pitt is the latest celebrity to showcase his work, unveiling nine sculptures at an exhibition in Tampere, Finland alongside musician Nick Cave, this week.

"For me, it was born out of ownership of what I call a radical inventory of self, getting really brutally honest with me and taking account of those I may have hurt, moments I have just gotten wrong," he said at the opening ceremony.

Here are 13 famous people, from actors to presidents, who are artistically talented:

1. Actor Brad Pitt

Although the Oscar winner has made a name for himself off-camera as an avid art collector, it was only recently that he went public with his own creations.

Pitt, 58, made a debut with nine sculptures at his first art exhibition at the Sara Hilden Art Museum in Tampere, Finland, as part of a larger exhibition by British artist Thomas Houseago.

The Ocean’s Eleven star’s sculptures included a wall-hanging made of plaster depicting a gunfight between eight people, called Aiming At You I Saw Me But It Was Too Late This Time, as well as his first creation, a miniature house made from tree bark titled House A Go Go.

“To me it’s about self-reflection,” Pitt told Finnish broadcaster Yle at the opening ceremony. “It’s about where I have gotten it wrong in my relationships, where have I misstepped, where am I complicit.”

2. Musician Nick Cave

The Australian singer-songwriter was also in Finland with Brad Pitt, to show his works at the Sara Hilden Art Museum.

Cave, 64, showcased a selection of his glazed ceramics, which included 17 pieces crafted, painted and glazed by the Into My Arms singer between 2020 and 2022.

Cave’s collection showed “glazed ceramic figurines depicting the life of the devil in 17 stations, from innocence through experience into confrontation of our mortality", according to a press release.

The musician’s work was inspired by Victorian Staffordshire flatback figurines, of which he is an avid collector.

3. Singer Robbie Williams

The British singer had his artworks auctioned off at Sotheby’s in London earlier this year, with one piece titled Beverly fetching £40,000 ($45,700).

Created alongside his creative partner, Ed Godrich, Williams, 48, showed 14 works, each named after girls' names — such as Trish, Sharon and Janet — which were popular in Williams’s home town of Stoke-on-Trent in England when he was a schoolboy in the 1980s.

Working under the collaborative name Williams Godrich, the Angels singer said he wanted people to “feel a sense of positivity… to be intrigued, to feel curious, and spot new characteristics every time they look back at each painting.”

4. Actor Pierce Brosnan

Having first started painting at the age of 16, Pierce Brosnan admits he wanted to embark on a career as a graphic artist before fame came knocking.

Telling People, "I always set up a studio when I go on location", the former James Bond star's portrait of Bob Dylan sold at auction for $1.4 million in 2018.

5. King Charles III

King Charles III is one of the UK's most successful watercolour artists, having earned around $3 million for his charitable foundation from selling his works. Photo: Instagram
King Charles III is one of the UK's most successful watercolour artists, having earned around $3 million for his charitable foundation from selling his works. Photo: Instagram

Also making a big success from his artistic endeavours is King Charles III. The new king on the British throne is a prolific watercolour painter, with all money earned from the sale of his paintings going to his charitable foundation.

Commenting on his passion, Clarence House has previously said the royal paints "in the open air, often finishing a picture in one go. Sometimes, the prince paints during his skiing holidays and during overseas tours when possible."

Painting for more than 50 years, King Charles III's works have been exhibited at Windsor Castle, featured on UK stamps and on a Swiss ski pass.

6. Singer Britney Spears

Pop star Britney Spears has shared photos and videos of herself painting, along with her two sons, writing on Instagram: "Painting feels so therapeutic to me." The performer aged 40 sold one of her paintings for $10,000 back in 2017 and donated the proceeds to charity.

7. Actress Alia Shawkat

Arrested Development's Alia Shawkat is another star who is artistically gifted. The actress aged 33, who played Maeby Funke in the hit comedy show, has exhibited her work in LA, Paris and Mexico City.

Art collector Pitt is a fan of Shawkat's pieces, which have been described as "colourful, frantic drawings", and the actress and artist told the Huffington Post: "I think any kind of art form should be funny, even when something is what we deem dramatic. Anything that is honest can be laughed at."

"As an 'artist' I hope to just express myself through all stages of my life," she wrote on her website. "Test my boundaries of what feels safe. And all the while, still enjoy the drawing when it's done."

8. Former US president George W Bush

Former US president George W Bush has painted a portrait of actor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Photo: Instagram
Former US president George W Bush has painted a portrait of actor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Photo: Instagram

The former US president is a prolific painter, with his book, Portraits of Courage: A Commander in Chief's Tribute to America's Warriors, featuring works of servicemen and women injured in war.

He also paints leaders, creating the above piece for the former governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who said: “I never dreamt that one day I would be painted by a president.”

9. Actor Sylvester Stallone

Sylvester Stallone is known for painting his character, Rocky Balboa
Sylvester Stallone is known for painting his character, Rocky Balboa

Fittingly, most of Sylvester Stallone’s art is based on his beloved character Rocky, and the actor has his own website, dedicated to his pieces, stalloneart.com.

“There is a public face and a private face, and I feel the same way about art,” he writes on his site. “It’s a collage of emotions. And when you can transfer that on to the canvas, it’s an amazing feeling.”

10. Actress Jemima Kirke

Girls star Jemima Kirke started painting at the age of 7 and attended the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design before she started acting. She is happier painting friends and family. and has even had her work exhibited in New York.

"I try not to think about it too much," she told Garage of her art, "otherwise I might become that person who walks around stomping her feet and shouting, 'I'm an artist.' It's not a good look."

11. Actress Lucy Liu

Actress Lucy Liu has been creating art for a long time, hosting her first show last year in Napa Valley and featuring her process on her website.

With her works fetching between $10,000 and $50,000, Liu first painted under the pseudonym Yu Ling, telling The Hollywood Reporter: "It was a form of protection and also to allow the viewer to have a very clear and open mind when they came to see the works."

12. Singer Halsey

The singer, who collaborated with BTS on Boy With Luv, is a talented artist and illustrator who drew the cover for her bestselling book of poetry, I Would Leave Me if I Could.

In March last year, she held an online exhibition, People Disappear Here, featuring “characters inspired by figures that occurred in a series of sleep paralysis nightmares I had at home during the quarantine".

13. Actor Seth Rogen

Pineapple Express actor Seth Rogen went public with his artistic side after working on pottery in April 2019, sharing some of the colourful vases, bowls and pots he has been creating during lockdown.

"It's been fun because I can just explore and play around and try different things," the actor aged 40 told The Cut. "If something turns out terribly, it's not ultimately damaging to my overall reputation as a ceramicist."

Citing British graffiti artist Banksy as an influence, Rogen said: “It’s very flattering that people have responded to my work and that I’m able to bring attention to this thing that not a tonne of people have paid attention to, even though it’s one of the oldest art forms on the planet.”

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