Melbourne, July 12 : Maddison Gabriel, who provoked outrage and international headlines when she was picked as the face of last year's Gold Coast Fashion Week at age 12, has now been signed by a top New York modelling agency.
The 13-year-old stunner has been signed by a top New York modelling agency.
The prestigious agency, Elite Model Management, is responsible for having driven the careers of supermodels Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford.
Gabriel's Australian modelling agency, Tamblyn Models in Brisbane, met with Elite last month to formally stitch up the deal.
"They thought she was a lovely fresh-looking girl," The Daily Telegraph quoted Tamblyn Models general manager Sallie Tamblyn, as saying.
"They are looking at bringing her over in January during the school holiday period," she said.
Gabriel's selection as the face of Gold Coast Fashion Week last September provoked outrage from child protection groups and even prompted the then prime minister John Howard to issue his personal disapproval.
But Tamblyn said there was no danger in Gabriel working as a top model at such a young age because she only ever did jobs appropriate for her age, such as teenage parades.
"I really don't think its detrimental and her age isn't an issue," Tamblyn said.
"Maddison has only ever done age appropriate jobs, which is teenage parades. She hasn't done anything that is going to make her into any form of sex object or anything," Tamblyn added.