About the Artist
My artist resume lists my exhibits, education, awards, and more.
Members of the press, please visit the press room.
John Vias wanders around in the dark taking pictures. His award-winning night photography has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in galleries and other art venues throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, including the Pro Arts and Joyce Gordon galleries in Oakland, Canvas Gallery and Fort Mason Center in San Francisco, and the Berkeley Art Center.
Vias's work has won awards in juried shows and has been reprinted in the press. It hangs in public, private, and corporate collections in the U.S. and abroad.
John Vias (rhymes with "bias") was born in Evanston, Illinois. He earned a Certificate in Photography from University of California Berkeley Extension and a B.A. from the University of Florida. He lives and works in Berkeley, California. You can preview his work at his website, johnvias.com.
Hear about how I got started in night photography, my current work, and my inspiration in this two-minute YouTube video. Below the video is a slightly edited transcript.
"Hi! My name is John Vias and I photograph the urban landscape at night. I got started in it when I was a photography student. I was up late at night, which I typically am--I'm a night owl--and I thought I might as well go out and shoot and see what happens. So I did. I photographed in B&W first and liked the results I got, so I kept at it. I've switched to color. Night photography is what I've done exclusively since 2004.
"The image I have in the show I call Slow Down. It's a nautical speed limit sign in the Berkeley Marina. In the background is the constellation Orion. Over the winter of 2006 I photographed in the Berkeley Marina around the time of the full moon and shot park benches and other subjects. "Slow Down" is one of my favorites in that series. The name comes both from it being a speed limit sign trying to get boaters to slow down as they enter and exit the marina but also, in a larger sense, that we're living lives at an accelerated pace. We seem to keep going faster and faster and faster. We run from place to place and from appointment to appointment and we've forgotten how to take leisure, to slow down and appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. My night photography is about encouraging people to see that beauty. To slow down and appreciate the beauty that surrounds us every day. I hope my art can encourage you to do that. Thank you."
John Vias, night photographer