John’s life is a story of the Arctic and Nova Scotia. He owes his storytelling to both the Inuit among whom he was raised, 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 38th 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. Between Adventure Canada sailings, John lives in historic Halifax and beautiful Rose Bay with his wife, AC Staffer Ree Brennin Houston, and son Dorset, enjoying visits from his daughter, Becky Kilabuk of Iqaluit.