Karolína Isela Kurková (born
February 28, 1984) is a Czech model, best known as a former Victoria's
Secret Angel, and an aspiring actress. Mario Testino said of Kurková, "The
proportions of her body and her face, as well as her energy level, make
her a model who could fit almost into any moment." Vogue editor Anna
Wintour called her the "next supermodel".
Karolína Kurková was born in Děčín, Czechoslovakia, to Josef Kurka, a
Czech basketball player, and a Slovak mother. While Kurková was young, she
was made fun of for her height. But after a friend sent photos of Kurková
to an agency in Prague, she - at 15 - landed a runway appearance, as well
as a commercial and print advertising. She later traveled to Milan to gain
more experience and signed a modeling contract with Miuccia Prada.
In September 1999, Kurková appeared in the American edition of fashion and
lifestyle magazine Vogue, and after moving to New York City at the age of
17, graced the cover of the February 2001 edition, becoming one of the
youngest models ever to appear on the magazine's cover.
Following her Vogue cover, Kurková became recognized at haute couture
fashion shows. Additionally, the lingerie brand Victoria's Secret chose
her to be a part of 2000's televised fashion show special, though she was
only 16 at the time. Prominent fashion houses such as Yves Saint Laurent
signed Kurková to contracts, while print campaigns for Tommy Hilfiger,
Valentino, Louis Vuitton, John Galliano,Chanel, Christian Dior, Hugo Boss,
Versace, H&M, and others helped expose her even more. In the 2002
Victoria's Secret fashion show, she wore the multi-million dollar fantasy
bra, worth almost $10 million and designed by Hearts on Fire. Other runway
credits of hers include Alberta Ferretti, Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga,
Calvin Klein, Carolina Herrera, Chanel, Christian Dior, Dolce & Gabbana,
Karl Lagerfeld, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren, Stella
McCartney, and Vera Wang.
Kurková was named "Model of the Year" at the 2002 VH1/Vogue Fashion
Awards, in part for her work ethic, having worked twenty-three weeks
Kurková has appeared in almost twenty Vogue magazine covers
internationally, including the French, Italian, UK, German, Russian,
Greek, and Korean editions, and has also appeared in international
editions of Elle, Vanity Fair, and The Face. She has worked with noted
fashion photographers like Steven Klein, Mario Sorrenti, and Mario
After being contracted as a Victoria's Secret Angel in 2005, she was
featured in the 2006 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, showcasing the $6.5
million fantasy bra decked with almost 2000 diamonds weighing 800 carats
and a centerpiece diamond brooch weighing 10 carats. She is the only Angel
besides Heidi Klum to model the fantasy bra twice. As an Angel, she
received a star on the Hollywood "Walk of Fame" prior to the 2007
Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, appeared on the February 2008 cover of
Esquire, re-creating the classic 1966 Angie Dickinson cover for the
magazine's 75th anniversary, and was chosen as part of People magazine's
100 most beautiful people in the world.
In December 2007, she could be seen in print ads for Dell.
Model.com featured her at number five on the list of the hottest models
In the last Cía Marítima fashion show, Kurková's unexpectedly heavier
physique brought criticism from the Brazilian press as having "too much
back fat, love handles and cellulite".
Kurková is among the world's top-earning models, having earned an
estimated $5 million in the year 2007. She was placed 6th in the Forbes
annual list of the highest earning models.
Kurková has a smooth indentation in place of a navel, and photographs are
often altered by the addition of an image of a navel to hide this.
Kurková is represented by Viva Models Paris.
In November 2008, E! Entertainment Television voted her the world's
sexiest woman, beating the likes of Angelina Jolie, Scarlett Johansson,
Gisele Bündchen, and her fellow Angels Heidi Klum and Adriana Lima.
Kurková made her film debut alongside Frankie Muniz, Harvey Keitel, and
Amber Valletta in Howard Himelstein's coming-of-age dramedy, My Sexiest
Year. She played Courtney A. Kreiger / Cover Girl in the live action 2009
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra film.
She appeared on the 2008 Academy of Country Music Awards along with Dwight
Yoakam in presenting the "Top Female Vocalist" award to Carrie Underwood.
She lives in New York City's TriBeCa district and enjoys courtside
basketball games at Madison Square Garden.
Kurkova revealed that she has suffered from hypothyroidism, which caused
her to gain weight.
In July 2009, she announced she is expecting a child with her fiancé,
Archie Drury. On October 29th, Kurkova gave birth. The baby boy, Tobin
Jack Drury, weighed in at 6 lbs. 3 oz., and is the first child for the