Kristina Pimenova is the daughter of former model Glikeriya Shirokova and the Russian footballer Ruslan Pimenova. The 9-year-old has been modeling for the last six years. Successful she may be, her presence online has created a lot of controversy.
Though her mother uploads images of her budding career, as well as personal photographs on social media, she is careful to explicitly state on both of these social media platforms that the young model does not play a role in managing her posts. On the Facebook page, there is even a list of rules that discourage negative comments and “role-playing” of Kristina.
There’s no denying she is gorgeous enough to be a model and of course, child models have existed for a long time, but recently there’s been a stir in the media about whether she’s being sexualized on the Internet.
Here’s an example:
This particular image seems more personal than professional and shows Kristina before bedtime with her long legs crossed casually and has created a stir. There have reportedly been quite a few alarming comments from users, although the comments have been deleted since by her mother, who manages her Instagram account.
Child modeling is a reality. While Kristina’s mother/manager has tried to protect her daughter from the harshness of having a spotlight cast upon such a young person by reinforcing strict rules and making sure she doesn’t wear too much makeup, etc., there’s no controlling the Internet.
The thing about anything visual is that it is entirely subjective. “You can say her expression is sultry in her photos, or suggestive, or too mature. Or you can say she looks moody and sulky. Essentially, you're just looking at a girl who happens to be extraordinary beautiful. Perhaps if her face was that of an average-looking child, no one would be having this conversation,” said one anonymous model agent.
Nick Vandepeppel, who commented on one of the pictures, phrases it best when he remarked “beautiful girl. Don't forget to be a kid.”