Isabeli Fontana - Biography & Career
Isabeli Bergossi Fontana (who occasionally simply goes by "Isabeli") was born on July 4, 1983, in Curitiba, in the Parana region of Brazil. She has two siblings; brothers Harrison and Heric. By the time she was merely 12 years of age, Isabeli told her mother that she wanted to become a model.
In 1996, she was a finalist in an Elite Model Look Contest in Sao Paulo, and the following year, at the age of only 14, she traveled from her native Brazil to Milan, to start working as a model. This move helped Isabeli see her home as those from other countries see it; "Everyone wants to know about Brazil," she admits.
In 1999, when she was 16, Isabeli appeared in the Victoria's Secret catalog. This generated a bit of a stir in the fashion world, since Victoria's Secret reportedly violated its policy of only hiring models that were 21 or older. But such controversy helped, rather than harmed, Isabeli's prospects, especially in an industry that worships youth to extremes. A case in point: Isabeli revealed that when she was 16, clients complained that she looked too young; when she was 17, they thought she looked too old. C'est la vie in the world of fashion.
Nevertheless, she landed work with such world-famous labels as Valentino, Versace, bebe, and Ralph Lauren, strutting down fashion runways from New York and Paris to Milan. She appeared in international editions of well-known magazines like Vogue, Marie Claire and Elle, and also worked on a campaign for M. Officer, a hot, up-and-coming design house in Brazil, in which Isabeli was photographed in provocative poses that kept everyone guessing. She was also one of the models to appear in the coveted Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition in 2002 and 2003.
Isabeli now lives in New York with her fiance, fellow model Alvaro Jacomossi. Despite the hustle and bustle of her new home, Isabeli doesn't get caught up in Manhattan's flashy nightlife. She goes to movies with Alvaro (though she's not big on TV) and enjoys music, especially her "three R's": rock, reggae and rap.
With a promising career and a comfortable lifestyle, a model on the verge of superstardom could lose her head. Not so for Isabeli. Knowing that the career of a model is a short one, she's already looking to the future. She recently became a mother and she's even thinking of taking up acting, though she doesn't have the time to take classes yet. Isabeli is also prudent enough to invest some of her modeling earnings so that she can buy a house in Alvaro's hometown. But whatever she may do later on, Isabeli doesn't want to cut herself off from modeling completely.