Elena And Cressie Get Ready For The Party 3 is a print from Julian Opie’s 2011 Elena And Cressie Get Ready For The Party series. This print is a close-up portrait of a young woman, drastically cropped so as to show only her facial features as she looks up to the left-hand corner. The sitter’s gaze reaches beyond the image frame but has an emptiness to it that distances the viewer from the subject.
Stemming from his interest in the human form and studying the figure in full length, from the 1990s Opie began to focus more closely on the heads of his models. Elena And Cressie Get Ready For The Party 3 is dynamic in its dramatically cropped composition that works to focus the viewer’s gaze on the sitter’s eyes. Depicted in his late graphic style, Opie has incorporated a great level of detail in his rendering of the subject’s eyes, thus setting this portrait apart from much of the artist’s earlier works.
Although Opie works from photographs of real people, the viewer is aware of the abstract, computer-generated element of the image that spurs a sense of the unfamiliar. The sitter is startling in her uncanny appearance and is presented like an image one might find in a comic book or animation programme.