John Houston - Inuit Art Specialist, Arctic Filmmaker

John Houston

Inuit Art Specialist, Arctic Filmmaker

John grew up among Inuit while his parents showed Inuit art to the world. He uses storytelling, filmmaking and art to bridge the cultural gap.

John’s life is a story of the Arctic and Nova Scotia. He owes his storytelling to both Inuit, among whom he was raised by, while his parents James and Alma Houston, helped develop what the world now knows as Inuit art, as well as to a long line of Maritime ancestors.

After graduating from Yale University, John became Pangnirtung’s Art Advisor, regaining his childhood fluency in Inuktut. Also fluent in French, he went on to work in film across the Arctic and worldwide. John and his mother opened Houston North Gallery in Nova Scotia, now in its thirty-eighth year.

They also co-founded the Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival, the province’s longest-running music festival. John has written and directed six of his own films, all winners of international and domestic awards, with a seventh from Nunavik (Arctic Québec), and an eighth from Mi’kmaq territory, nearing completion.

His latest film, Atautisikut, Leaving none behind, released in 2020, provides insight into the Art coops of Nunavik.

Between Adventure Canada sailings, John lives in historic Halifax and beautiful Rose Bay with his wife, Adventure Canada staffer Ree Brennin Houston, and son Dorset, enjoying visits from his daughter, Becky Kilabuk of Iqaluit.