Andrew Johnstone



A British artist now living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area, Andrew is a muralist specializing in photo real trompe l’oeil (deceive the eye), and has been a professional artist his entire life.

Following a classical European education in the arts, he became the apprentice and protégé of William Holgate ([1931-2002] the world's finest master of the decorative arts in the last 150 years) working on cathedrals, Royal Palaces and international architectural treasures. Before moving to California, Andrew served with Greenpeace as a crew member on the flagship Rainbow Warrior I working on campaigns across Europe and the North Atlantic protecting marine mammals and preventing chemical and nuclear dumping.

Since 2005 he has worked with the legendary architect/artist Rod Garrett on designing "The Man Base," the centerpiece of the Burning Man festival, the world's largest art event, held annually in Nevada. Andrew continued as the designer of The Man after Rod's passing in August 2011 and was given the title of “Steward Of The Man” by Burning Man's founders.

In October 2011 he was honored by winning the Alameda County Board of Supervisors 2011 Arts Leadership Award and was subsequently appointed to a four-year term as a board member on the Alameda County Arts Commission. He also holds a position on the board of the Alameda County Arts Education Commission and Executive Committee. He was a faculty member at University of California, Berkeley, where he lectured in and wrote the curriculum for the course “mural and decorative arts” and continues his calling to pass along his knowledge with The Big Picture Project, mentoring graffiti offenders towards “making art without victims''.

In 2019 he was invited by the European Cultural Academy to give a lecture about his work designing Burning Man at Palazzo Rossi in Venice as part of the Biennale Arte Festival. He was subsequently invited by the Academy to lead a workshop in Amsterdam of artists from around the globe with the work being exhibited at Venice Giardini della Biennale in October 2020.

In the summer of 2020 Andrew was also the subject of a major movie by director Gerald Fox called "Art On Fire" based on a book of the same name by Jennifer Raiser.