Abel Barroso was born in 1971 in Pinar del Rio, Cuba. He was educated at the National School of Visual Arts and the Higher Institute of Art, both in Havana, Cuba.
His work has been extensively exhibited and can be found as part of the collection of important museums and institutions around the world, such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York (MOMA); the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana, Cuba; the Blanton Museum at the University of Texas; The University of Arizona Museum of Art, Phoenix, Arizona; and the University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum, Tampa, Florida among others.
Barroso has created a very personal and peculiar iconography based on the intrinsic quality of objects. By using the matrix as oeuvre instead of the traditional print, the artist is rooting for the object. His work is overall sober, avoiding superficial and distracting elements such as color or an exquisite finish. Conceptually his oeuvre has always leaned towards a caustic approach to the chosen subject, in this instance migration. By taking advantage of the satirical and witty tradition in Cuban Art, Barroso is masking the political content of his work behind an apparently fresh and lighthearted vision of the situation. He is offering a playful take of a new social order, where the older structures are completely obsolete, and the new rules are dictated by different players, therefore bringing in front of us a new social scenario.