Royal in red! Natalia Vodianova stuns in crimson dress at Love Ball in Monaco while Princess Charlene glows in pink lace
PUBLISHED: 19:29 EST, 27 July 2013 | UPDATED: 19:29 EST, 27 July 2013
As one of the world’s most highly paid supermodels, Natalia Vodianova certainly has looks and money – but she also has a generous heart, as she proved on Saturday by hosting a charity ball in Monaco.
The 31-year-old shone in a red floor-length gown as she welcomed high profile guests to the 1960s Riviera themed Love Ball, which was held in the Opera Garnier at the Casino de Monte-Carlo.
The mother-of-three flashed a vermilion smile as she posed on the red carpet alongside celebrities and dignitaries, including Princess Charlene of Monaco and her husband Prince Albert II of Monaco.
The princess looked radiant in an ethereal strapless pale pink lace number – the perfect foil for Natalia’s daring look.
Looking ebullient, Vodianova smiled for the cameras next to her boyfriend Antoine Arnault, son of billionaire LVMH founder Bernard Arnault.
Her shoulder-length blonde hair styled in tight curls, Russian-born Vodianova showed off her tiny waist in a structured corset, which skimmed her hips and eventually gave way to a full skirt.
The dress was embellished with a mesh neckline, leaving room for nothing but a simple pearl necklace.
A rectangular red clutch and diamond bracelet were the only other additions to the outfit.
Choosing not to overshadow her hostess, Princess Charlene opted for a much subtler look.
With barely-there make-up, glowing skin and hair slicked back from the face, Charlene looked effortlessly beautiful.
Her strapless pale pink gown and total lack of jewellery only served to highlight her toned swimmers physique, while Prince Albert looked dapper in a black dinner jacket and bow tie.
Other guests included U2 frontman and philanthropist Bono, who attended with his wife Ali Hewson and 24-year-old daughter Jordan.
Tennis ace Novak Djokovic appeared with girlfriend Jelena Ristic, who was elegant in cobalt blue, while model-turned-photographer Astrid Munoz, 38, stood out in a pretty red and white floral gown.
Peruvian fashion photographer Mario Testino, Chanel designer Karl Lagerfeld and English socialite Tamara Veroni also showed up to the glittering event.
Guests were treated to dinner, live entertainment provided by Russian opera, ballet and classical music stars, as well a charity auction.
Items up for grabs included a trip to Monaco complete with Louis Vuitton luggage, Christian Dior couture, a Riviera diamond necklace from Russian jewelers Yana and an internship under Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel in Paris.
Vodianova hosts the Love Ball each year to raise awareness for The Naked Heart Foundation, which she founded in 2006 to help disadvantaged and special-needs children in Russia.
Natalia Vodianova shows off her supermodel figure in a mismatched bikini as she holidays on the French Riviera
PUBLISHED: 06:44 EST, 23 July 2013 | UPDATED: 06:45 EST, 23 July 2013
She’s one of the world’s top paid supermodels after starring in campaigns for Calvin Klein and Guerlain.
And looking at Natalia Vodianova on the beach in the French Riviera on Monday, it’s hard to believe she’s a 31-year-old mother-of-three.
The Russian supermodel, who earned a reported $8.6million in 2012, has barely aged a day since breaking into the modelling world when she was 17.
Despite having three children, there’s no evidence of her previous pregnancies on the slender 5ft 10in beauty.
Spotted on St Tropez, the blonde showed off her slender figure in brown snake-print bikini bottoms and a light-coloured top.
In fact, the philanthropist recently admitted she would consider having more children.
Natalia split from her property heir husband Justin Portman, 44, in 2010 following nine years of marriage and three children.
After spending most of their marriage in London, Natalia then moved to Paris a couple of years ago after finding love with Antoine Arnault – son of billionaire fashion mogul Bernard Arnault.
She now lives in the French capital with Antoine and her children Lucas, 11; Neva, seven, and Viktor, five.
Natalia told the Mail On Sunday’s You magazine recently: ‘I think five is a nice number. We’re already quite a family, but now that they’re growing up they could help with little ones.’
She is also optimistic she can become friends with her ex-husband Justin, who she married when she was 19 and pregnant with Lucas.
She said: ‘I hope that in time I can be friends with my ex. We had a very painful break-up, but he is the father of my children, and a very important person in my life.’
Natalie ended up at No.3 in the Forbes list of the world’s top paid supermodels last year, beating Adriana Lima and Doutzen Kroes for four and five respectively.
via Daily Mail Uk
10:15 Последний из подготовительных забегов «Московского марафона» пройдёт уже 25 августа. Он будет называться «Красочным»: участников будут обсыпать красками, как на знаменитом индийском празднике. Забег проведут в поддержку фонда «Обнаженные сердца» и в нём поучаствует основатель фонда Наталья Водянова со своей командой.
10:15 The last of the preliminary races, “the Moscow marathon” will be held on August 25. It is called “the colorful”: participants will run dressing in colors, as in the famous Indian festival. The race will provide fund in support of the “Naked Heart” and founder Natalia Vodianova will take part of it with her team.
News on 15 July 2013
via The Village-Ru
[Translation via Google Translate and some educated guess; if you have a better version to suggest, please, do comment.]
The Naked Heart Foundation and Gazprom Export have announced the launch of a joint education programme. The aim of the project is to give children with autism and severe communication-related, mental and behavioural disorders the opportunity to study in school. Efforts will be focused on training teachers in special schools in the principles of organizing an education syllabus for such children. The first stage of the project will take place from 2013 to 2015 in schools in Nizhny Novgorod, with the support of the City Department of Education.
According to various international studies, the average incidence of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) worldwide stands at 1 in 110 people. The latest figures show an even higher incidence of ASD – 1 in 88 people.
Currently in Russia around 90% of children and young people with severe ASD are excluded from the education system and do not attend school. Parents are either informed that their children are not ready to start school, or the option of home schooling is proposed. As a result, an overwhelming majority of these children do not have the opportunity to develop social skills or gain knowledge, and their parents are obliged to give up work and stay at home with their child.
Svyatoslav Dovbnya and Tatiana Morozova, programme creators: “Children with autism can be very different. Some of them may have extraordinary abilities and an amazing memory; in others the disorder might be manifested by learning difficulties. But all children are capable of learning and communicating, and children with autism are no exception. The only thing is, in order to learn, many children with ASD require a specially organised teaching process and special approaches and technologies for presenting the learning material. If a child is having difficulty mastering the school syllabus or is behaving inappropriately in class, it is not the problem of the child or his/her family. It is simply that the classroom conditions and syllabus do not meet his/her needs. Special teaching programmes for children with severe autism spectrum disorders in Russia have only just started being created. In many ways, this initiative is being spurred on by groups of parents, trying to defend their children’s right to education. This has happened all around the world.”
One of the main aims of the project “Introduction of modern technologies for teaching children with autism spectrum disorders in Nizhny Novgorod’s special schools” is to give specialists working with children with special needs the opportunity to study modern and effective working methods, exchange experience with colleagues and have access to educational workshops involving international experts. The development of a professional community of specialists working with children with autism in schools and at the Naked Heart Family Support Centre will not only significantly improve psychological and educational support for children and their families but will also broaden the scope for schools to take in children with various forms of autism.
The expert group of the Naked Heart Foundation and the Nizhny Novgorod City Education Department have selected six special schools to participate in the project. Teachers from these schools will have the opportunity to learn about: modern approaches to organising teaching; how to use children’s strengths when designing a teaching programme; the principles of setting up a learning environment, developing communication in non-verbal children, socialising children and assessing sensory integration; and how to evaluate a child’s skills and determine his/her learning objectives. School heads and teachers will also have the opportunity to learn about teaching children with ASD in St. Petersburg and will take part in the international forum “Every Child Deserves a Family”, dedicated to issues of autism.
About the programme creators: Naked Heart Foundation experts Svyatoslav Vasilievich Dovbnya, Paediatric Neurologist and Tatiana Yurevna Morozova, Clinical Psychologist, both leading Russian specialists on issues of children’s development and mental health.
Tatiana and Svyatoslav are involved in several international projects to develop support services for vulnerable families and children in Russia and countries of the former Soviet Union; they are the co-founders of the St. Petersburg Early Intervention Institute; they are certified teachers for the UK Mellow Parenting programme; they have written training programmes and multiple publications; and they are consultants on a project carried out by the Government of the Nizhny Novgorov Region and KPMG to develop early intervention services.
StellaMagazine, Sunday TelegraphUK, 14 July 2013
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HelloMagazineUK #1286, 15 July 2013
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HelloMagazineUK 1285, 13 July 2013
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Daily Mail UK, 29 June 2013
Xposé Entertainment, 24 June 2013
Vogue UK, 24 June 2013
Berluti Maison store opening
Time to swing your pants in an excited fashion. Berluti Maison has landed in London! In Conduit Street, if you must know. And for the official opening, all the cool socialites in town (the types that divide themselves between Paris and London) rolled up, popping in for tasty cocktails and a jolly good nose around. Natalia Vodianova caught up with Eva Herzigova and Alice Temperley, while boys Dan Stevens, Jack Guinness and Dinos Chapman nattered away in the corner. At closing time, they all upped sticks and followed Berluti Chief Executive Antoine Arnault down to the Blain|Southern Gallery for a private supper. Nom.
Natalia Vodianova at the London opening of Berluti Maison
via Tatler UK
05 June 2013
Supermodel Natalia Vodianova Hosts Fundraiser Gala in Cannes in Partnership with Cinémoi Television Network Benefitting FilmAid International & Naked Heart Foundation
Star-studded fundraiser gala hosted by Supermodel Natalia Vodianova in partnership with Cinémoi Television Network raises vital funds for FilmAid and Naked Heart Foundation.
Cannes, France (PRWEB) May 23, 2013
The roof was well and truly raised at the Plage Royale private members’ club in Cannes, when over 300 guests joined three powerful and philanthropic women — Supermodel Natalia Vodianova, Caroline Baron and Daphna Ziman, at the inaugural Beach Ball Gala in support of Naked Heart Foundation and FilmAid International.
In partnership with Cinémoi Television Network, guests including Mel B, Radha Mitchell, renowned British fashion designer Julien Macdonald and swimsuit designer Melissa Odabash, enjoyed amazing food and specially crafted Beach Ball cocktails from Sodastream and Chivas. The evening’s emcee, Cinémoi North America President Daphna Ziman, and Natalia Vodianova and Caroline Baron, founders of Naked Heart Foundation and FilmAid International, shared inspiring words followed by a soulful live musical performance by R&B superstar Kenny Lattimore.
The evening raised approximately $500,000 through a silent and live auction conducted by Christie’s, with rare offerings including a private photo session with Patrick Demarchelier which brought in over $100,000. The event was made possible by the generous support of Bocelli Family Wines, Guerlain Paris, Chivas, Sodastream, Plage Royale and Rodial.
“Cinémoi chose the Beach Ball Gala for its inaugural presence during the Cannes Film Festival because of the two powerful women, Natalia Vodianova and Caroline Baron, whose passion for helping women’s and children’s causes mirror Cinémoi’s humanitarian philosophy,” said Cinémoi North America President Daphna Ziman. “We were also thrilled with the warm reception Cinémoi received from celebrities and festival attendees who lauded our network for its quality and elegant programming,” added Ziman.
Cinémoi North America, on DirecTV channel 259, is quickly becoming one of the most desired destinations on cable network — introducing American viewers to curated, contemporary and vintage movies and providing coverage to glamorous world events and exotic destinations. U.S. viewers have accessible 24-hour exciting and entertaining movie and lifestyle programming, primarily in English, ranging from CinéDramas to CinéFilmNoir, CinéFestivals, CinéDoc, CinéCouture, CinéGreen, CinéThriller and CinéRomance.
The Naked Heart Foundation was founded by Natalia Vodianova in 2004 to support efforts to eradicate child abandonment in Russia and build inspiring and accessible play facilities in impoverished areas across the country.
FilmAid International uses the power of film and media to transcend language and literacy, bringing life-saving information, psychological relief and much-needed hope to refugees and other communities in need around the globe.
we didn’t have the time to dream. i remember having english lessons in school and thinking, why on earth would I learn another language? @natasupernova by #alasdairmclellan for #wsj
May 17th 2013
via NataSupernova Instagram
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FASHION Updated May 16, 2013, 4:44 p.m. ET
Natalia Vodianova Moves Beyond the Runway
The model has never done things the usual way. She became a mother of three and a philanthropic powerhouse, all while conquering the fashion world.
DURING FASHION WEEK this past March in Paris, Natalia Vodianova maintained a schedule that would test anyone’s stamina: She was the guest of honor at a surprise party for her 31st birthday, hosted by her boyfriend, Antoine Arnault, son of LVMH founder Bernard Arnault. The next night she hosted a party to launch online retailer Net-a-Porter’s sale of a shoe collection she designed for Russian retailer Centro to benefit her Naked Heart Foundation, a charity she founded a decade ago to help disadvantaged children in her native Russia. That Sunday she woke up at 6 a.m. to run the Paris half-marathon, also in support of the Naked Heart Foundation; did a Givenchy fitting; came home to feed lunch to her three children; and then headed off to get into hair and makeup to close the Givenchy fashion show at 7 p.m. Among the front-row onlookers were Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Jessica Chastain, Arnault, Vodianova’s 11-year-old son, Lucas, and her Russian grandmother, who clapped wildly as she watched her granddaughter sashay down the runway for the first time.
That Vodianova is still landing prime modeling jobs now that she is on the far side of 30 is surprising. That she simultaneously established herself as a philanthropic force even more so. Historically, supermodels have waited until their bookings diminish to turn their efforts to charity and other second careers. Vodianova still has lucrative contracts with Guerlain and French lingerie brand Etam, for which she also designs her own collection. It’s a wave she could ride until she washes up on fashion’s more obscure shores, but instead, Vodianova has always sought to establish herself as someone with interests and ambitions above and beyond the runway—or as her friend designer Stella McCartney puts it, she’s been “well-rounded” from the start.
This spring, her efforts were acknowledged with the Inspiration Award at the annual DVF Awards—an honor that designer Diane von Furstenberg has previously presented to Íngrid Betancourt and Elizabeth Smart, both women who have “demonstrated extraordinary strength and courage in the face of adversity” and use this “experience and influence to effect positive change.” Von Furstenberg met Vodianova when she was 19 years old, during her first season modeling in New York in 2001, when the designer snapped her up to open and close her catwalk presentation. “I immediately loved her. She was never like a young child, always a grown-up,” says von Furstenberg. “Very early on she took her life in her hands and decided that unless she controlled it, she couldn’t succeed.”
Vodianova’s rags-to-riches life story reads like something only a screenwriter could imagine: One day she was selling oranges at a fruit stand; then she was signing an exclusive multimillion-dollar contract with Calvin Klein. Born in Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial town 260 miles from Moscow, she started skipping school at the age of 11 to help support her single mother, Larissa, and autistic younger half-sister, Oksana. (Vodianova’s father walked out when she was a toddler, leaving her mother to work three jobs, including selling fruit at a local market. At first, Vodianova helped her before taking over the duties completely.) “I used to sell fruit on the street in minus-25-degree Celsius weather, outside in the open air, for 12 hours straight. I would come home and scream in pain as my fingers and my toes were literally defrosting,” says Vodianova, now amid much plusher surroundings in a Paris apartment overlooking the Invalides she shares with Arnault. Resting up the day before the marathon, she’s curled on a couch wearing a cap-sleeved sweater and black-and-white-striped trousers. Flipping open her agenda, she shows me a photograph from her childhood. “I always had big black circles under my eyes, which were swollen. You can literally see that burden in my face.”
Vodianova was determined to make a better life for herself, and in 1999, when she was 17, a boyfriend suggested she attend an open casting call. The model scout immediately recommended her to an agency in Moscow. At first, her mother was reluctant to let her go because she was suspicious of the scout’s intentions and depended on her help at home. According to Vodianova, “We didn’t have the time to dream. I remember having English lessons in school and thinking, Why on Earth would I learn another language?” Yet Vodianova’s grandmother was encouraging, and the family decided she could give it a try.
From Moscow, Vodianova was immediately sent to Paris. Her agency gave her a weekly advance, which she sent to her mother, who by then had a third child, daughter Kristina. “It was quite a lot of money for my family, like a month’s salary,” says Vodianova. It helped her mother come to terms with her daughter’s decision to leave. “She started to realize that this could be good.” Meanwhile, it was the first taste of freedom from an angst-ridden existence for the young Vodianova. “It was such a beautiful time, just having that chance to be a different person. For once, I was a normal girl and completely anonymous in a new place and had an opportunity to start a new life.” That new life began in earnest when she met the Honorable Justin Portman, a dashing English property heir, at a Parisian dinner party. They married in 2001, when she was 19 years old and pregnant with their first son, Lucas.
Her career took off immediately. Among a crop of leggy Russians, Vodianova stood out for her chameleonlike acting abilities, intense work ethic and sense of humor—not to mention her wide-set, expressive eyes, thick brows and pouty lips. Photographer Juergen Teller shot her for a 2001 Marc Jacobs campaign. The following year, Tom Ford cast her in a Gucci campaign. She became a favorite of Vogue, starring in the title role of a now-famous Alice in Wonderland–themed editorial shot by Annie Leibovitz and styled by Grace Coddington in the magazine’s December 2003 issue. And then, at the age of 21, she signed an eight-season, seven-figure contract with Calvin Klein that changed her life.
“When I met her for the first time, she took my breath away. She is beyond superficial beauty. This is a beauty that is from the inside and comes out,” Klein says. Vodianova was the last girl Klein personally put under an exclusive contract before he retired, catapulting her into the ranks of a Kate Moss, Christy Turlington and Brooke Shields. “She was very sexual, seductive, she was all those things that I wanted to represent. I used her for everything I could… Too often, models are flat. They have good bodies, but you can see in their faces that there’s not a lot there. But Natalia has such a great spirit.”
A year after her first Calvin Klein ads appeared in 2003, when larger-than-life images of her posing seductively loomed over New York’s SoHo, Vodianova decided she needed to pay back some of the good fortune she was enjoying by forming her own charity. The impetus was the school hostage crisis in the Russian city of Beslan in 2004, which ended with more than 380 dead, many of them children. Vodianova was in Moscow at the time of the crisis and witnessed firsthand how her countrymen were shaken by the tragedy. “It was everywhere. The whole country stopped,” Vodianova remembers. Lucas, her eldest child, was 3 years old at the time—the same age as some of the children who were killed. “I was wrestling with how I went from the bottom of society to the top of financial security. That feeling of unfairness upset me.”
As she struggled to determine what she could do to help, she sought the answer in her own past. “I went back to my childhood and saw myself as a little girl who was very much in a difficult situation, growing up with my disabled sister. My childhood was very abnormal. I missed out on simple things.” Oksana was born with autism and cerebral palsy. “I was attached to her and [therefore] almost disabled myself because I couldn’t play with my own friends.” Vodianova’s eyes tear up as she tries to explain, “I felt ashamed sometimes. We spent all our time walking outside because she loved it, but we were always exposed to people being horrible to us. I remember thinking that what I lacked the most as a child was a place to go where I felt like I belonged.” Vodianova had found her mission: to build playgrounds in underprivileged parts of Russia in order to provide other children with the carefree joy she had missed.
To date, she has built 90 playgrounds in Russia through Naked Heart, and she has expanded her horizons, helping to build three in the U.K. She has hosted fund-raising Love Balls in Moscow, London and outside of Paris, which have raised millions of dollars and attracted the likes of Anne Hathaway, Kate Moss, Mario Testino and Daphne Guinness. This year’s ball, the fourth such extravaganza, will be held on July 27, at the Monaco opera house. Hosted by Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene of Monaco, along with Princess Caroline of Hanover, the event will be Vodianova’s biggest ever: a 550-person sit-down dinner with a 1960s Riviera theme.
But while her foundation has grown exponentially, Vodianova faced a personal hurdle of her own: a separation and divorce from Portman. They were together for nine years and, after Lucas, had a second son, Viktor, 7, and a daughter, Neva, 5. The couple separated in 2011, and she soon met Arnault, now the CEO of Berluti, at a fund-raiser for her charity at the designer Valentino’s estate outside Paris, and began a new chapter. They now live together with Vodianova’s three children, and she has immersed herself in Parisian life, even taking French lessons. “I am very happy now,” she says of her love life, trying but failing to hide a smile.
It’s easy to refer to her life as a modern-day fairy tale, but for Vodianova, it’s a bittersweet comparison. “On the one hand, I don’t like it because my story was not defined by who I am dating, by some prince charming,” she asserts. “I married for love. I work hard on being a good mother, and a good partner and in my profession. Those successes cannot be attributed to chance.” But there is one fairy tale that she’s happy to be associated with: Alice in Wonderland. “She took what was given to her and went with it. Go down the rabbit hole and see what life gives you. I can definitely relate to that!” she says. “Besides, I never wanted to be Cinderella. I’d rather be Alice, and I’m happy I found my wonderland.”
is your newsfeed over dazzled with Cannes?
i was always curious to find a way for Naked Heart Foundation to benefit from this exciting event. this year it will happen. we were invited to join efforts with FilmAid to raise awareness and much needed funds for both charities during this year’s film festival with relaxing fun evening on the beach. if any of you there the night of 21st may you can support us and be one of the first to see my next red number S))
16 May 2013
via NataSupernova Facebook
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For more information on The Beach Ball: here.
Model Vodianova honored by Diller-von Furstenberg foundation for philanthropy work in Russia
By Associated Press,
Updated: Wednesday, April 10, 2:09 PM
NEW YORK — Model Natalia Vodianova was honored as an inspiration to women at the annual DVF Awards, in part because as a globe-trotting jet-setter, she hasn’t forgotten her roots in Russia.
Actually, it’s her around-the-world lifestyle, rubbing shoulders with fashion’s glitterati, that allows her to help back home, the 31-year-old model said.
Vodianova founded the Naked Heart Foundation in 2004. The charity started as a project to build a playground for the surviving children of the Beslan school massacre. It has now grown to 90 play parks in 68 Russian towns.
“I conduct most of my fundraising in the fashion industry. It’s very international, and we have a lot of events outside of Russia, and even those in Moscow or St. Petersburg bring international celebrities and performers,” she said. “I activate all my resources.”
The DVF Award was presented to Vodianova last week at the United Nations by designer Diane von Furstenberg as part of The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation that honors leadership and courage.
Vodianova said it was particularly special because it was the first time she’s been celebrated outside of Russia for her charity work. Plus, von Furstenberg is more than a business acquaintance.
“It’s so hard to put into words our relationship so it doesn’t sound cheesy. I love her. She’s my role model, my confidante, someone I share vacations with. We are friends, and I consider her a part of my family,” Vodianova said.
The designer returned the compliment, telling The Associated Press in an email: “Natalia is a beautiful, strong and determined young woman. I was first drawn to her beauty and then I discovered her enormous heart when she came to me in 2004 wanting to help the children who had suffered from the Beslan tragedy. I saw that she was a woman who could make things happen.”
Vodianova’s now a veteran of the runway, having walked in more than 175 fashion shows, from Calvin Klein to Yves Saint Laurent, but she said a von Furstenberg show was the first one she ever opened and closed.
“My English at the time was really poor, but she made me feel really good about myself” she said. “She made it very personal. It was more than I fit her ‘look.’ Diane said she liked my personality.”
Vodianova makes Paris her home with her three children. She went to modeling school in Paris and lived there in her teens after being “discovered.” She has also lived in London and New York.
Travel is part of the modeling gig, and even though she doesn’t like being away from home so often, she’s thankful to have work and to be successful at it, she said. Vodianova has been the face of many ad campaigns, including Stella McCartney, Givenchy and David Yurman.
She is very active on social media and is “always available on my Blackberry.”
“I very much continue my day job that pays my bills, and it gives me the constant exposure that I need to be good for Naked Heart. It’s tough when I have to go film a commercial for a week in India — that’s a week away from my family — it’s what I like to do, love to do and have to do.”
The key is not to think too much about it or look too far ahead on the calendar, she said. “Stopping makes for more jet lag. Keep moving, and I do keep moving generally in life with just little stops to say hello to myself.”
Newsweek, 29 March 2013
[Very well deserved]
from one disneyland to the next s) straight off the plane from delhi to paris disneyland.
here today together with other important press and vip guests from all over europe 5 girls with learning disabilities who are under the patronage of the @nakedheartfoundation family support center in nizhny novgorod will attend a very special fashion show. tonight Minnie Mouse will be her most glamorous self on the catwalk for the first time. she will walk in front of 2000 people in a new lanvin dress designed especially for her on this occasion by Alber Albaz. i just seen the dress and its beautiful. Minnie Mouse looks like princess ready for the ball. we will be competing tonight as i am also dressing up but for different occasion “bal de la rose” in monaco where I am heading to right now. I just had lovely lunch with Polina, Marina, Yulia, Liza and Irina and we got to pose with Mickey. now they are going to continue their weekend and on their way to nemo ride (one of my favourite).
The girls and their parents will spend a weekend in disney having tour of all the rides and meeting their favourite characters s)
NataSupernova on March 23rd 2013
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I have only been in India once before. Exactly 10 years ago for 4 hours S) It was a completely crazy trip. It took me almost 24 hours to get to Goa from Moscow to shoot on the beach that could be anywhere else in the world including a lake in Nizhniy Novgorod. Life of a model, hey? However even that could not put me off this beautiful country. I feel like I know India well from books like Shantaram and Q and A. I love this wild raw free spicy colourful spiritual place.
March 22nd, 2013
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MarieClaireUK, March 2013
“Russian supermodel: Steve Jobs inspired my charity
March 20, 2013 IgorNaidenov, RusskyReporter
Natalia Vodianova, the Naked Heart Foundation founder, talks to Russky Reporter magazine about modeling as a profession, improving government-NGO relations and what the name of her charity organization has in common with Steve Jobs.
Legendary model Natalia Vodianova is the founder and head of the Naked Heart Foundation, which recently held an international forum in Moscow. In an interview with Russian Reporter, Vodianova shares her opinion about modeling as a profession, improving government-NGO relations and what the name of her charity organization has in common with Steve Jobs.
Vodianova dressed in a deep red – her favorite color – for The Naked Heart Foundation international forum, which was held at the President Hotel in Moscow. Vodianova is both the founder and the president of the foundation. Attendees at the forum discussed how best to help both children with special needs and their parents, as well as children living in closed institutions or with foster parents.
Russian Reporter sat down with the ‘Lady in Red,’ who became a legend as a Russian model and is currently adding to her legacy through philanthropy.
Russian Reporter: Natalia, I hope you won’t be offended by my question!
Natalia Vodianova: It’s like water off a duck’s back. Fire away.
RR: OK! So let’s say I take a look at the page about you on Wikipedia. We find your height, weight, hair color, and waist and breast size. Other people’s achievements get listed as achievements – the books they wrote, the formulae they proved. Yet they write about you as though you were prize cow. Doesn’t being treated like dairy cattle humiliate your personal individuality?
N.V.: Not a bit. It’s a part of my life; it’s my profession, and I love it. It’s what pays the bills. I’m doing what I love to do, what I want to do, and what I have to do. Directing my unspent energy towards worthwhile causes is my favorite thing.
RR: Actually, a friend and I were discussing whether being a model is actually a profession?
N.V.: I’d say it probably is – more likely yes than no. I remember how I got started: I had no experience and it was awful. I remember how helpless I felt. I knew that I had to use my appearance as a tool, but I didn’t know how. I needed some kind of method – like actors have the Stanislavsky method. I realized that models aren’t just coat hangers.
Modeling is a job: It produces results, establishes your image and confirms your individuality. You need to be a shrewd psychologist when dealing with your colleagues, with clients, with the mass media – with everyone. These days, I know that I’m a professional in my field.
RR: Does it get to you when people like Zhirinovsky and his cronies accuse you of self-promotion, when organizing humanitarian aid and psychological assistance for the people of the disaster-hit town of Krymsk?
N.V.: No, things just carry on as usual. I usually try to find some kind of lesson in the criticisms people make, but there was nothing to learn here.
RR: Well, someone must have voted for him. He’s sitting in Parliament, after all.
N.V.: Well, probably. Who knows? I’m not sure. I don’t involve myself in politics – I’m apolitical. I’m sufficiently independent financially to be able to take no interest in politics. You know what I mean?
RR: Maybe you could explain?
N.V.: We work independently. Although we know that, for the optimum result, the support of the government and a suitable political climate can be helpful. But we don’t count on it, and we don’t expect it. I’m talking here not on behalf of my own charity foundation, but for many non-profit organizations doing work with children that we support.
On the other hand, regardless of what people may say, the government’s approach to these organizations is improving. The consensus among the public at large and within the business community is that [these organization] perform an essential role, and there’s a desire to help them.
RR: What makes you think so? Sure, many companies are ready to engage in community work, but it’s not worthwhile for them. They’re suffocated by taxes and they don’t have any guarantees that the aid they provide actually reaches the beneficiaries.
N.V.: That’s just pure, unadulterated bias. I guess the only way to improve the situation is by example and by working. It’s like a glacier: if the sun shines, then it keeps melting and melting; and eventually it disappears. Of course you can keep on whining that the aid doesn’t reach the people who need it, blah-blah… But what I can tell you is that our money gets through. Every last penny gets through.
RR: If you took a greater interest in politics, you would have heard that the Kremlin and the KGB suspect nongovernmental organizations of everything – up to and including espionage.
N.V.: I have complete faith in the people we work with. They are 100 percent transparent and offer completely honest accounting processes.
RR: Be that as it may, Russians are used to cynicism when dealing with organizations that claim to be doing good works – particularly charitable foundations. It’s widely believed that they’re laundering money.
N.V.: That’s a stereotype from the 1990s. I’ve never come across that kind of approach myself. Our foundation, for example, spends just 10 percent of its budget on administrative costs. And that’s impressive.
RR: Do bureaucrats on the ground support you?
N.V.: They have no reason not to support us. Do you know how our first program, Play with Purpose, works? A region sends in a request to be included in the program. We never refuse a request, so we have to make a waiting list. After that, we work out a schedule and arrange financing; that is, we decide how much will come from our foundation and how much will come from local budget sources.
From the very outset, this has been a program set up by regional authorities. And it has built children’s playgrounds and parks all over Russia.
From the moment we began in 2004, we’ve built 90 different facilities. These include children’s homes and hospitals, oncology units, and rehabilitation centers, with a geographical spread covering 68 cities in Russia.
Our second project is called Every Child Deserves a Family. You know what it’s about? We step in as a support agency – a protective umbrella. We give financial and administrative aid to professionals in NGOs, to help families with kids who have special, developmental needs.
RR: What did you dream about when you were working at the outdoor market?
N.V.: Kids like me didn’t get to dream. I dropped out of school. We were a family of five, living in a one-room apartment in a Khrushchev-era building. The only furniture was the table and the bed. I didn’t have a dream, but I had a wish – just one, huge wish.
I wished that all this struggling for basic survival could somehow end, that our daily anxieties about how we were going to survive until tomorrow, how we were going to eat, put clothes on our backs and find the money to ride the bus would come to an end.
RR: What was it that helped you get through it all? Was it your belief in God, in yourself?
N.V.: I can’t really say what or who it was. Maybe it was a kind of belief; I’m not sure how to explain it… As if, when the very worst happens, you don’t panic, but instead you regard it as a test of your tenacity.
Recently, I was listening to the Internet talk Steve Jobs gave to Stanford graduates after he had been diagnosed with his illness. Do you know what he said? ‘When we confront the possibility of death every day, and we realize that tomorrow could be our last day, then all our conventions and assumptions lose their significance.
It’s then that our decisions come straight from the heart.’ What struck me most was what came next. He said: ‘You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.’ And my charity is called The Naked Heart Foundation. I’m convinced that there is more in that than just mere coincidence.
The interview is first published in Russian in the RusskyReporter magazine.”
Book of Mormon Comic Relief gala
It may have been cold enough to knock your ears off but inside the Prince of Wales theatre the cockles were well and truly warmed. Folk including Claudia Winkleman, Helena Bonham Carter and Richard Curtis gathered for a gala showing of chucklesome new musical The Book of Mormon which raised the roof with its sheer hilariousness. Lenny Henry got everyone chortling with a pre-show speech then, if the ribs weren’t tickled enough by the performance, a few rounds of champagne in the interval meant by the end the audience were almost EXHAUSTED from laughing. All SO appropriate, as the gala was for Comic Relief after all.