Billy Morton Petyarr was born on Alyawarr/Kaytety land north of Utopia Station. He currently lives and works at his ancestral home of Ngkawenyerr, a community renowned for both sculpture and painting. He is married to Mary Petyarr and is the father of artists Lucky, Audrey, Ruby and Sarah Kngwarray.
Petyarr began his sculptural training by shaping desert timbers into boomerangs, spears and shields. In 1988, Petyarr gained access to synthetic polymer pigments and began to paint designs on his artefacts. In 198889 the artist moved from making traditional objects to producing innovative sculpture with a series of wooden poles with snakes and goannas climbing them.
Petyarr's next group of works, also from 198889, consisted of human forms covered with bold body designs reductive shapes that bear vibrant linear patterns.
Petyarr has been exhibiting in Utopia group shows since 1988, when his work was first exhibited at Utopia Art Sydney. In 1991, his work was included in Australian Perspecta at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, and in 1993, was included in Aratjara: Art of the First Australians at Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Germany.