Between 1970 and 1974 Haley studied sculpture, print-making and drawing at the National Art School in Sydney. In 1975 she received her Diploma in Art, having majored in sculpture and print-making, from the Alexander Mackie College of Advanced Education (now College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales). Beginning her career as a textile artist Haley began focusing on painting in 2004. Haley’s most recent solo exhibition of her paintings was in 2006 at Stella Downer Fine Art Sydney. She has also had solo exhibitions at Wollongong Regional Gallery in 1999, Object Gallery Customs House in 1999, Hester Gallery in 1996, Long Gallery Wollongong University in 1995 and Beaver Gallery in 1989. In 1975 Haley was awarded a Visual Arts Board Grant from the Australia Council for the Arts and before that in 1973 she was awarded a Cultural Grant from the Government. In 1982 Haley was commissioned to print the fabric for a garment worn by television presenter Katrina Lee at the Logie Awards. In 1988 Haley established Vivian Haley Designs and in 2003 Haley judged the Maroogal Women’s Art Prize in Nowra, NSW. Haley’s work is held in the collections of the Tamworth Regional Gallery, the University of Wollongong, the Alice Craft Acquisition Collection at the Araluen Centre, the Wollongong City Art Gallery, the City of Ohrid in the Republic of Macedonia and the Nepal’s Women’s Organisation in Kathmandu.