- Cedar carving (65x74x5 in) 2012
John Livingston was born in 1951 on Vancouver Island and moved to Victoria at an early age. It was through a close friendship with the renowned Hunt family of carvers that John was introduced to wood carving. Henry and Tony Hunt were head carvers at the Royal British Columbia Museum in the early years of the 1960s. Through their influence, John began carving at Thunderbird park, a section of the museum. He was a young lad of ten at the time.
After graduating from high school, John began an intensive apprenticeship under Tony Hunt, on a full-time basis. He was a founding member of the Arts of the Raven Gallery, a gallery that was a major force in Northwest Coast Native art for over twenty years. They organized international exhibitions and the gallery workshop trained many of the Kwagulth artists working today.
John is a master sculptor of wood and has completed many large totem commissions with Tony and Calvin Hunt, as well as many more large totems and other sculptures independently. John works mainly in the medium of wood, but is also an accomplished painter. Through his close association with the Hunt family, John has participated in several large family potlatches and has been given the rights to a number of important Kwagulth dances. From his home studio in Victoria, John is also noted for his expertise in the restoration of important North West artifacts. His expanding versatility has led him to work on major projects with Haida, Salish and Nuu Chah Nulth artists. He is internationally known for his fine carvings and is highly regarded as a teacher and mentor to young carvers.