Maurice Haddad was born in Basrah, Iraq in 1937, the son of a respected local linguist who worked as a translator for the British Consulate. He started drawing as a young boy and in 1961 graduated from the Baghdad Institute of Fine Art. He then began a career in teaching, lecturing in Ceramics whilst continuing to paint for his own enjoyment. His first private exhibition was at the age of 25 years, with a collection of ceramic pieces and paintings in watercolour and oil.
In the late 1970's he developed a special interest in the chemistry of porcelain, an area with little tradition in Eastern countries. His passion for the subject eventually led him to France, where in 1982 he attained a higher degree from the Limoges National Institute of Art.
Returning to teaching in Iraq, he wrote “The Techniques of Ceramic Art”, which became a standard text on the subject within the country. He put his new skills to use producing a number of porcelain figures, breaking new ground within the Middle East, whilst also acting as an expert consultant advising industrial ceramics companies.
His earliest artwork had been based on the natural beauty of his birthplace in southern Iraq, particularly the Marshes and its people. During the Iran-Iraq war he became prominent for his empathetic drawings depicting the battlefield. Following his retirement from full time teaching in 1986 he became inspired by the ancient Sumerian civilisation, with aspects of their mythology and the portrayal and perception of woman, past and present, forming a strong theme in his work.
He remains devoted to the world of art and is currently living in Germany, where he is trying to form a group of young, local artists. His own style continues to develop with experimentation in the use of historical techniques for making colours, including the use of clays, metal oxides and plants such as henna.
Recently he has had several personal exhibitions in Germany. In May 2003 he represented Iraq at "Immigration and Art – Cultural Imperialism and Blossoming Diversity", an international exhibition at the Catholic Academy of Trier.
His most recent personal exhibition was in June 2003 in Vienna, the proceeds of which went to a humanitarian aid project for the children of Basrah, his home. This contained a collection of some fifty works based on the Marshes and the ancient civilisation of Babylon.
- Graduate of the Baghdad Institute of Fine Art.
- Higher degree from the Limoges National Institute of Art.
- Member of the International Association of Art.
- Founder member of the Iraqi Artists Confederation.
- Member of the Iraqi Impressionist Group.
- Participated in international exhibitions in Jordan, Lebanon, England, France, Germany, Austria, Denmark, Switzerland, Russia, Japan, China and the USA.
- Presented his oil and watercolour works at over 30 personal exhibitions in both the Middle East and Europe.
- Represented Iraq on many occasions in the International Gala of Art.
- Museums and galleries have collected many pieces of his works.