May Portraits


The work is entitled Ruby after the focused subject, the English Cocker Spaniel, the beloved companion of a US-native client based in Vienna.

This breed of dog, known to be active and intelligent, is juxtaposed with a blurred setting, not only an invitation for the viewer to look more closely, but to suggest a lack of clarity in the mind of the subject. The composition is inspired by Flemish artist Jan Van Eyck and meant to be conceptional besides the representational figures. Ruby and the figure in bed appear to mimic one another, portraying the notion of man’s best friend or in this case dog’s best friend while not losing their individualism, or autonomy.  Each still life object adjacent to Ruby is recognisable after a second glance and are a constellation of dreams, passions or challenges confronting him subconsciously. Ruby provides peace while the subject seems to seek clarity after being lured in by an array of life’s larger matters. Like a precious stone, clarity will command a premium. Here the subject seeks clarity in knowledge, a friend and a fresh mindset to face the world. The bed is simply a haven of rest, a sanctuary of peace and harbour of love. Challenges and reflection shape us.

  • Ruby
  • brush
Oil painting Ruby by Damir May
Oil on canvas
Detail of oil painting Ruby by Damir May Ruby dog detail of oil painting by Damir May Ruby and Damir May at May Gallery