"Beauty doesn't come from just makeup and a good bra, it comes from your heart. It's true!" Karolina Kurkova
Czech supermodel Karolina Kurkova received her first taste of fame in America as the 17-year-old model who graced the cover of Vogue magazine in its February 2001 edition. The 5' 11" tall, long blond-haired, green-eyed Czech beauty with 33.5-23-34.5 measurements won the Model of the Year title at the 2002 VH1/Vogue Fashion Awards and was selected to be a Victoria's Secret “Angel.” The international modeling star is also branching out in acting and will soon be seen starring opposite Frankie Muniz, Harvey Keitel and Amber Valletta in the upcoming film My Sexiest Year.
"A girl who is interested in becoming a model must first accept the fact that she is the product. She must be ready to deal with a lot of rejection." Karolina Kurkova
Childhood and Family:
"Remember who you are and where you come from. Otherwise, you don't know where you are going." Karolina Kurkova
In Decin, Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic), Karolina Kurkova, nicknamed “KK,” “Kinka,” or “La Kurkova,” was born on February 28, 1984. Her father, Josef Kurka, was a Czech star basketball player, and her mother is Slovak. Kurkova now resides in the TriBeca district of New York City with her longtime boyfriend. She loves courtside basketball games at Madison Square Garden and also likes to go to the gym and participate in yoga.
"I don't really have a New Year's resolution to go on a diet or anything like that. I am who I am and I don't want to be somebody else. I love to eat! Great food is one of the biggest pleasures in life. My taste depends on my mood; sometimes French, other times Italian, Japanese, Thai." Karolina Kurkova
My Sexiest Year
"I always had enormous passion for cinema and acting, as well as writing journals, painting, reading and learning new things." Karolina Kurkova
Daughter of a Czech basketball star, Karolina Kurkova inherited her father’s figure and height. After a best friend encouraged her to send her pictures to an agency in Prague, Karolina found herself walking on catwalks as well as appearing in commercials and print ads.
Kurkova subsequently flew to Milan, where she was signed by well-known Italian fashion designer Miuccia Prada. In September 1999, the hard-working 15-year-old model landed a modeling job with fashion and lifestyle magazine Vogue, in New York.
Moving to the Big Apple, Kurkova, at the tender age of 17, received America’s recognition when she graced the cover of the February 2001 edition of Vogue, becoming one of the youngest models ever to appear on the magazine’s cover. This led to deals with the famed lingerie retail marketer Victoria's Secret, where she was selected as one of their “Angels” and has appeared in a string of the company’s popular TV specials. Additionally, Kurkova also signed a deal with French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent and world-famous designer Tommy.
In 2002, Kurkova, who was called the "next supermodel" by Vogue editor Anna Wintour, was honored with the "Model of the Year" title at that year’s VH1/Vogue Fashion Awards. This brought her more modeling jobs with such designers as Ralph Lauren, Oscar de la Renta and Balenciaga.
"What I love the most about modeling is that it opens you a lot of different doors of opportunities and takes you to many different places, which then put you in touch with various people and cultures." Karolina Kurkova
Meanwhile, Kurkova has also appeared on NBC’s talk show "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" and in the fashion documentary Seamless, in 2005. She also has tried her hand in acting and just completed her first film, My Sexiest Year, a romantic coming-of-age drama/comedy written and directed by Howard Himelstein. The movie stars Frankie Muniz, Harvey Keitel and Amber Valletta.
Besides modeling, Kurkova is active in humanitarian work, promoting the welfare of children through such organizations as "The Beautiful Life Fund," "Free Arts" and "Global Youth Action Network." She received an award from a non-profit organization called Women Together, in March 2006.
"Everyone likes and deserves to have some fun. In the end, when you smile, life smiles back at you!" Karolina Kurkova
- VH1/Vogue Fashion: Model of the Year, 2002