Ingūna Butāne, known professionally as “Ingūna”, is a fashion model of Latvian descent, born on February 24, 1986 in Riga, Latvia. She is a Catholic who speaks French.
She was discovered after winning a contest in her home country. A friend convinced her to attend the contest during the summer time, and because of the timing and slow pace of the summer, Ingūna finally agreed to go. “I met the people from Women Milan. I went to Moscow, finished school…” She majored in Interior Design in college and finished two years early.
From Moscow she traveled to New York City, and made her debut at the spring Fendi show in Milan in 2003, and appeared as the face of an Armani jeans campaign in 2004.”It's a dream come true! I appreciate beautiful clothes…but I can't shop everyday—I get bored!“ Her first season she booked campaigns for both Gucci and Dolce and Gabbana. In 2005, she was featured alongside several other Eastern European models in Vanity Fair in a spread called “Slavs of Fashion, The New Beauty”.
She’s been seen on the cover of German Vogue, Bottega Veneta, has been the face of Yves Saint Laurent cosmetics, and has appeared in magazines like Allure, Harper’s Bazaar, and Italian Marie Claire. Ingūna Butāne has been photographed by some very noteworthy photographers, including James Macari for Spanish Vogue, Magnus Unnar for Dazed & Confused, and Annie Leibovitz for Bottega Veneta in a campaign with Kim Noorda and Anja Rubik.
Ingūna Butāne has walked the runway for Christian Dior, Victoria's Secret, Chanel, and Michael Kors, and Oscar de la Renta. She credits most of her career success to her work ethic and desire to succeed as a model. “You really have to like it because if you don't, then it's hard to do your best. A lot also depends on the team you work with. Don't change who you are. Try to be in a good mood all the time!”
In 2012 she caught the attention of celebrity blogger Perez Hilton, as she was featured in a video by renowned makeup director Peter Philips for Chanel’s new Rouge Allure Lipstick Line. The clip featured mirrors and Indian accents, and is said to have been inspired by the Pre Fall Bombay Collection.
As a young girl, Ingūna Butāne practiced the violin and loves to listen to classical music to this day. She and her husband had a child named Eden in 2011.