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Cyan Dee has been M. Edmondson's legal name since 2005 and is also an alias for making smaller and/or 'fandom' works.
Fandom/Impersonator/Doppelgänger Series

“Cyan Dee is an alter ego of Machiko Edmondson: Another version of herself and another way of painting.

She calls these little works ‘impersonators’. It’s a parallel practice of portraiture once removed, as if there were some kind of stand-in, where resemblance is uncannily familiar but never quite what—or who—it seems.”

Andrew Renton (Professor of Curating at Goldsmiths University of London, ex director of Marlborough Contemporary)

"Cyan Dee's A4-sized portraits of favourite pop musicians work deliberately within the humble realm of fan art, but elevate this form to a dazzling level. Painted in oils, with rare exceptions on the semi-opaque surface of mylar, to allow the white card behind them to exaggerate their luminosity, each is a declaration of love to a creative spirit who has impacted her life. Having declared her artistic intentions as a student at Goldsmiths in 1995 with her MFA degree show devoted to monumental portraits of her favourite musician, the great Nick Cave, and then moved on to her signature close-up portraits on an equally grand scale. The artist, also known as Machiko Edmondson, continues to focus on the often other-worldly humanity of her chosen subjects. These recent works on a much more intimate scale bring the viewer into direct confrontation with her (and our) heroes, depicted more or less life-sized with intensity and brilliance.
Working from found photographs that are available to anyone is a risky venture, especially when the photos are of people as famous and the object of as much adulation as David Bowie, Marc Bolan, Brett Anderson, Marianne Faithfull, or Rowland S. Howard. Elizabeth Peyton is one of the rare painters who has successfully worked within this sphere at a level of great sophistication. All over the world, teenagers will have been attempting such portraits for decades with very mixed results. But Cyan transforms each image into a painterly rendition that is stamped indelibly with her bravura technique and her fascination with hair and piercing eyes as signifiers of personality. Her passion for the music shines through.”


Marco Livingstone (art historian, writer, and curator)




The main shared characteristics between the large Edmondson paintings and Cyan Dee's pieces are their use of appropriation and the fact that they are alluding to something other than what is there on the surface.  

The manner in which they are executed and appropriated evokes a sense of unease and anxiety.

They are paintings/drawings of ‘unattainable desire’, replacing the narcissism of the subject with that of the painting/drawing, both in terms of images and the medium itself. 

As Cyan Dee, I use 'Fandom' as a methodology to examine the manifestation of desire, anxiety, and obsession, again, both in terms of the fan identity and the language of the painting/drawing itself.

Engaging in the production of artwork informed by fandom inherently involves the use of appropriation; while the images are absorbed and consumed through this method, identification and desire collapse into one another.

Sherrie Levine was once quoted: 

‘My work is so much about desire and its triangular nature. Desire is always mediated through someone else’s desire.’

Parallel to Levine's work, my pieces combine and address the inherent quality of appropriation, characterised by its always mediated nature, along with a narrative of desire that also possesses a consistently mediated quality.

'Lies My Parents Told Me' series
'Truth or Dare' series