Born in 1942 into a long-standing Haifa family.
During his high school days he learned painting and sculpting at the workshops of art teachers Yaskil Avraham, Meirowitch Zvi, and sculptor Kafri Mordecai. In 1962 Abdi was accepted for membership in the Haifa branch of the Israeli Association of Painters and Sculptors, becoming its first Arab member, and held his first exhibition in Tel Aviv, at the age of 20.
He then pursued academic studies at the Fine Arts Academy in Dresden (Germany). His professors were Lea Grundig, G. Bondzin and G. Kettner. His masterwork at the Academy received the 2nd prize, which allowed Abdi to spend another year at the Academy and specialize in murals and environmental sculpture.
In 1970 he received his M.A diploma, and was then selected by his academic supervisor Prof. Gerhard Bondzin, along with a group of other graduating students at the Academy, to participate in the erection of a huge mural at the Cultural Palace (Kulturpalast), built in 1968 in the center of Dresden, a mural which still remains a cultural landmark of this part of unified Germany .