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Women Who Inspire: Isabella Rossellini

(Green Porno Season 2, Limpets / sundance.tv)

NAME: Isabella Rossellini

AGE: 61

OCCUPATION: Filmmaker, actor, model, graduate student

WHO SHE IS: Fact: Although she spent most of her life acting and modeling, this world-famous beauty and daughter of Ingrid Bergman and Roberto Rossellini has always loved biology.

Now 61 (and still stunning), she has found a way to combine her love of science and theater in a series of spectacular short films: Green Porno, Seduce Me and Mammas — all while raising a family and pursing a graduate degree at Hunter College in Animal Behavior and Conservation. Why the fascination with biology? “The secret to success is not perfection,” she says, “it’s diversity. [If you are “perfect] and the environment changes–bang! You’re dead.

WHY SHE INSPIRES ME: I’ve admired this elegant, strong and effortlessly beautiful woman since my days as a Lancôme counter manager in the early 90’s. But after seeing her live at BAM last month, I am even more smitten. She is wickedly funny, frighteningly smart and believes that beauty is about the weird and wonderful—in animals, in the world, and in each of us.

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