Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth at Daniel Cooney Fine Art

Image above: © Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth, Nydia in Profile with Broom Gag, 2011 2500 / Daniel Cooney Fine Art


AIMG_2796-2-EditAshley Comer
Image above: © Ashley Comer, From the Opening Reception

Daniel Cooney Fine Art is pleased to present a collaborative project titled Nydia by artists Juan Betancurth and Benjamin Fredrickson. The exhibition features a selection of Polaroid photographs made by Fredrickson with Betancurth’s mother as the subject, wearing Bentancuth’s provocative hand made sculptural objects.

Nydia From Behind_1Image above: © Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth, Nydia with Rope Bondage Tool (Back), 2011 2500 / Daniel Cooney Fine Art

Betancurth is the seventh of eight children from a small town in Colombia where his parents still reside. As a child, Bentancurth and his siblings were subjected to his mother’s unusual manner of discipline using self-devised contraptions for punishment. As an adult artist far from Colombia and years from childhood, he has found inspiration in her objects of punishment for his sculptural work. In Fredrickson’s photographs we see Betancurth’s mother in her home wearing the objects her son has made especially for her.

Christ with Hanging Tool 72dpi_1Image above: © Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth, Christ with Hanging Tool, 2011 / Daniel Cooney Fine Art

In 2012 Fredrickson travelled alone to Betancurth’s home village and spent a week with his friend’s mother, Nydia. He, speaking no Spanish and she, speaking no English quickly built a bond and began working. Fredrickson describes the week with affection, describing the large lunches that Nydia spread out for him and their afternoons creating photographs together. He describes her as an eager participant looking to connect with her son, with ideas on how to be photographed and a gracious and generous host.

Nydia at the Front Door 72dpi_1

Image above: © Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth, Nydia at the Front Door, 2011 / Daniel Cooney Fine Art


Betancurth is a Colombian born artist living and working in New York City. He has exhibited internationally and was recently an artist in residence at the Queens Museum.

Nydia licking Glass Tool 72dpi_1

Image above: © Benjamin Fredrickson and Juan Betancurth, Nydia Licking Tool, 2011, 2011 / Daniel Cooney Fine Art


Fredrickson graduated from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 2003 and moved to New York City in 2010. This is his second exhibition at the gallery. His solo exhibition “Salon” is running concurrently at the Bureau of General Services Queer Division at the LGBT Center in New York.

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