Born in 1966 in Baghdad, Iraq, Mahmoud Obaidi graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Baghdad, with his bachelor's degree. In 1996, he received a diploma in New Media from Ryerson University, Toronto and, in 1998, a further diploma in film production from HIF Film Academy in Los Angeles. He also holds a Master's of Arts degree from the University of Guelph, Ontario (1999). Obaidi is particularly interested in exploring the conceptual side of art and has noted that the concept behind his work often determines his choice of media.
His solo exhibitions include the Museum of Modern Art, Baghdad, 1990; Darat Al-Funun, 1995; Stevenson Hall, Toronto, 1998; 4 Walls Gallery, Amman, 2002, and Fair Skies, Agial Gallery, Art Dubai, Dubai, 2010. He has participated in festivals, biennales and group exhibitions including Contemporary Arab Artists, Darat Al-Funun, Amman; KHOJ International Festival, Delhi, 1999; Dafatir: Contemporary Iraqi Book Art, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas, travelling exhibition, 2005-2008; Modernism and Iraq, Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University, New York, 2009; and Beyond the War, LTMH Gallery, New York, 2010. His work is held in public collections including Mathaf: Museum of Modern Arab Art, Doha; Museums of Modern Art, Amman, Baghdad and Quebec; Sharjah Museum; and Tidi Gallery Collection, New York. He lives and works in Doha and Toronto.