Influencer apologises over nude shoot with endangered elephant

Kristine Tarbert
·Features and Health Editor
·2-min read

An influencer has been forced to apologise after she was slammed online for a nude photoshoot that involved an endangered elephant in Bali.

Alesya Kafelnikova posed naked sitting on the back of the elephant, sharing the image with her 554K followers online alongside the caption: "to love nature is human nature".

 Alesya Kafelnikova posing naked on back of elephant
The Russian influencer posed naked sitting on the back of the elephant. Photo: Instagram/kafelnikova_a

The 22-year-old daughter of Russian tennis great, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, also shared the a video from the shoot with the caption "natural vibes”.

While she explained she had made a donation to animals and locals in the Balinese village where she did the shoot, plenty of her followers slammed the shoot as "vulgar".

"Poor elephant. Aren't you ashamed to lie naked on an elephant? This is a living creature. Money overshadows everything," one person commented.

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Even Bali Tourism Agency Chief Putu Astawa criticised the Russian, according to The Sun.

He said the video “surely does not meet the norms that we are promoting as part of tourism in Bali."

"Yet another tragic trivialisation of the majestic Asian elephant when the species is fighting for its very existence against brutal abuse in tourism and human 'entertainment'," a spokesperson from the charity Save the Asian Elephants also told the publication.

influencer Alesya Kafelnikov
Alesya is the daughter of Russian tennis great Yevgeny Kafelnikov. Photo: Instagram/kafelnikova_a

Initially, Alesya said it was a "pity that people see this as vulgarity, and not as beauty and love for nature."

However, as the criticism continued she was forced to issue an apology.

“Please, sorry if you see something else in this," she said.

“My intention with these pictures was to show you that I love and respect animals and especially elephants more than anything.

“I would wish that all those who are so negative will awaken an aesthetic love for my post and you will see the wonderful beauty in it.”

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