Faiq Hassan studied in Paris, receiving a degree from the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in 1938. Upon his return to Baghdad, he founded the Department of Painting at the Institute of Fine Arts He was the founder of a number of artist groups including Société Primitive in 1940 (later called the Pioneers Group in 1950), and the Corner Group (which he co-founded). Hassan was highly influential in the development of contemporary art in Iraq—he is credited as the founder of the Institute of Fine Art's painting department—in terms of his art productionand his role as an art educator.


During his lifetime, he explored a number of stylistic approaches, however, he is most commonly known for his realistic depictions of everyday life in Iraq. He held several solo exhibitions in Baghdad, in 1962, 1967 and 1971, and participated in the contemporary Iraqi art group show held in Beirut in 1965. In 1964, he received the Golden Prize of the Gulbenkian Foundation in Iraq. His work is held in public collections including Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha; Museum of Modern Art, Baghdad; and Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, Amman.