Photo of Nude Tween Brooke Shields Stokes Controversy

Critic slams display as 'magnet for pedophiles'

By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 29, 2009 4:58 PM CDT

(Newser) – A nude photo of 10-year-old Brooke Shields set to appear in an exhibition at the Tate Modern is drawing criticism from child-safety advocates. The photo, by Richard Prince, shows a heavily made-up Shields standing in a bathtub looking into the camera. Prince has said the work, Spiritual America, comments on Shields as an “abstract entity.”

She looks like "a body with two different sexes, maybe more, and a head that looks like it's got a different birthday,” Prince said. The social commentary was lost on child advocates, who slammed the photo: “Shields was 10 years old—she could not have given informed consent to it being used. It must be bordering on child pornography. It is certainly not art,” the founder of an advocacy group tells the Telegraph. “Putting the picture in a room with a warning outside really is a magnet for pedophiles."

Brooke Shields speaks at the memorial service for music legend Michael Jackson, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, on Tuesday, July 7, 2009.
Brooke Shields speaks at the memorial service for music legend Michael Jackson, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, on Tuesday, July 7, 2009.   (AP Photo/Gabriel Bouys, pool)
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If you are using a picture of a naked child to bring people to your exhibition, then you are exploiting that child. It's as if they are using a 10-year-old girl for bait. I find it disturbing and they should be ashamed of themselves.
- Michele Elliot, Kidscape

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