Initially self-taught, Francesc Abad (Terrassa, 1944) left the factory where he worked to study in the Escola d’Art i Oficis in Terrassa and the Centre de documentation pédagogique in Paris. In 1972 he spent time in New York. While the work of the early years was pictorial, with paintings of simplified shapes and minimal colours in the manner of Barnett Newman, in New York he began to incorporate other disciplines of Conceptual art such as actions and installations. Upon his return, he participated in the Grup de Treball with critical actions against the final stages of the Franco dictatorship.
Since then, the body, both as a subject of art and of daily life, and his own interaction with the landscape, have been the focus of Abad’s artistic work and actions. He has also worked on Conceptual and multimedia projects referencing emblematic thinkers of the twentieth century such as Walter Benjamin and Ernst Block, and on critical projects that speak out against the historical silence surrounding the vanquished. Some of his most notable works deal with the recovery of collective memory.
Since the late seventies, Abad has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions. These include multiple showings of El Camp de Bota in Catalonia (2004–7), Block W.B. La idea d’un pensament que crea imatges (Block W.B. The Idea of a Thought that Creates Images) in the Museu de Granollers (2005–6) and Estratègia de la precarietat (Strategy of Precariousness) at the ACVIC in Vic (2014–15). He has also exhibited in other cities such as Berlin, Frankfurt, Gijón, Grenoble, Girona, The Hague, Las Palmas, Lleida, Mataró, Palma de Mallorca, Sabadell, San Sebastian, Zaragoza and Tarragona.