Nico B. Young

If you squint while looking at three versions of the same image, lined up in successive perspectives, left eye - right eye - left eye, it’s possible to loosely replicate the effects of a Stereoscopic 3-D slide viewer. On Susan Pinsky and David Starkman’s website,, thousands of such pictures are archived to further their mission of “preserving stereoscopic history of extraordinary people who have enriched our lives”. While researching a happened-upon antique stereo viewer, Nico Young found the website, now run primarily by Susan, which she says gets very little traffic. He began to spend time with them, drawn to their fervent archival practice. Susan told Nico that the purpose of her website “was to offload this knowledge and 3-D archive and photography from her mind before she got too old to do so.”

The works in this show are all concerned with material, with preservation, and a certain kind of care. Using a stereoscopic camera, Nico photographed David and Susan’s stereo viewer collection, turning the medium into its subject and allowing looking to fall in on itself. Leslie is a reverse prototype, crafted through careful deconstruction, and subsequent reformation, of the artist’s father’s Leslie revolving organ amplifier, “a huge older model wood cabinet, a beautiful thing, originally designed to fit inside a church.” Flashlights, indexed and then arranged in bouquet, are inherited from an avid collector named Walter. Each re-animates an object, rescuing them from obsoletism by making by hand something manufactured.

Everything can be understood as a type of container: the body, time, recollection, a room, each gives because giving is finite. Where do all the memories go? While desire promises a certain endless cycle of pleasure, the reality of our closed system presses against wish fulfillment. Susan's website has hit the limit of its digital space. It cannot grow because the capacity allotted by has been reached. There is a universalism to the problem of the container. Its existence is the only thing that allows us to be intimate, with each other, with the world, with memory, but its existence also ultimately cuts us off. We are all here, and then we aren’t here. Isn’t it beautiful, these frayed metrics? Doesn’t love have something to do with finding the right container?

Nico B. Young (b. 1999) is from Santa Monica, studied art and geography at UCLA, and currently lives in Los Angeles.

Objects Receive Tender Care in Nico B. Young’s ‘Flashlights’
Sarah Hotchkiss, for KQED Ar

Walter’s Flashlights (1-3) (2023)

Leslie (2023)

Found Tabletops (2021-22)

Stereo-Viewer (2023)