Michael Andrews was born in Norwich, Norfolk. His parents were devout Methodists. He took Saturday classes in oil painting, before being accepted for the Slade School of Fine Art in 1947, but then joined the army for two years national service, much of the time was spent in Egypt, where he painted in watercolours. He entered the Slade just as William Coldstream had been appointed Professor. Three years later he was awarded the Rome Scholarship, but only spent five months out of a possible two years in Italy. He returned to London, acted in a film, Together, with the artist Eduardo Paolozzi, and began the slow succession of complex traditional subjects which he summed up himself in the words ‘mysterious conventionality’. Some of these paintings were done in a studio in Digswell, Hertfordshire, before he left for London in 1959. He taught at Chelsea School of Art and at the Slade School of Fine Art, both in London, but by his own admission never liked it. He had his first solo exhibition at the Beaux-Arts Gallery in 1958, and a major retrospective was held at Britain in 2001.

Further reading:
Richard Calvocoressi, Michael Andrews: The Scottish Paintings, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh 1991
William Feaver and Paul Moorhouse, Michael Andrews, Tate Publishing 2001