The life-size monument, “Memories of Sophie and Gracie: A Puppies’ Memorial,” depicts puppy versions of Winfrey’s beloved pets, who passed away last year and this past March, respectively.
“To represent Sophie and Gracie together, joined in Oprah’s memory as they were in life and in Oprah’s heart, the artist depicted them as conjoined at the hip and sharing a common tail,” says exhibit co-director John Leo in a statement. The dogs are shown standing on the flowing-haired likeness of Oprah’s head, in reference to how the dogs’ deaths may be weighing heavily on Winfrey’s mind. “Losing two beloved pets within a year is likely to take its toll on anybody.”
Edwards hopes the piece will help increase awareness of the threat of common household products to pets, since Gracie died at age 2 after choking on a small plastic ball. (Sophie died at 13 of kidney failure.)
“The memories of Oprah’s pets could serve as a reminder to all pet lovers that this may be a good time to thoroughly puppy-proof their pet’s habitats,” Edwards says.
The “Puppies’ Memorial” will be exhibited at Leo Kesting Gallery on May 22 in Manhattan. For more information, visit www.leokesting.com