Houston’s well-rounded and renowned photographer/mixed media artist John Bernhard joined the firm’s Houston office for a discussion of his life and work. Partner José Luis Vittor hosted this May 15 event.  

Bernhard is one of the four artists selected for Womble Bond Dickinson’s initial Art & Diversity Initiative. Leaving his home country of Switzerland for the adventure-filled landscapes of the USA, Bernhard shared his passion for unity and his work that centers around recurring themes: nature and transformation. He expressed his gratitude to be a part of the Art & Diversity Initiative at WBD. He was impressed that a business like WBD is actively promoting the inclusion of diverse local artists.  However, he expressed cautious optimism, believing that true inclusion effort lies in fostering unity, not creating an isolated pocket that can create further division. 

Bernhard discussed one of his recent exhibitions at Serrano Gallery featuring the “Arboreal” series. Drawing inspiration from the message of unity from the book “Tree of Life”, Bernhard created the work that celebrates the interconnectedness of trees.  The Arboreal portrays trees are not just individuals but as parts of a harmonious ecosystem.  Bernhard reminded the audience that trees communicate with each other by sending internal messages using their roots. Bernhard aspires to evoke a sense of unity and remind viewers of the inherent tranquility that exists in nature.

At WBD, Bernhard exhibited the series, Displaced, which delved into the homelessness problem.  He explained that he also wanted to call attention to the death of the American manufacturing era, which manifested itself in job losses.  Sticking to his recurring theme, transformation, the series demonstrated how the death of American manufacturing transformed into a gripping social issue that is close to Houston, homelessness. 

John Bernhard’s work not only showcases nature’s beauty but also reflects his exploration in search for meaning in life. When asked about his next adventure, he was proud to announce the release of his first romantic novel, solidifying his reputation as a true well-rounded artist.   

John Bernard and José Luis Vittor stand in front of John's artwork titled Displaced.John Bernard and José Luis Vittor stand in front of a Womble Bond Dickinson signJohn Bernard and José Luis Vittor stand beside an image from John's presentation.John Bernard speaks on a work of art displayed on a screen as members of our Houston office look onJohn speaks to the team in our Houston office