Virgil Abloh (photo), the first African-American to lead Louis Vuitton as artistic director, has died from cancer at the age of 41, on Sunday (local time).
Abloh founded his own brand “Off White” in 2013 and was hailed as the Karl Lagerfeld of the millennial generation for his cutting-edge designs such as using cables as running shoelaces. Abloh’s family stated his death on Instagram revealing that the designer had been privately battling a "rare, aggressive" form of cancer, cardiac angiosarcoma, for the past two years but chose to endure his battle privately.”
Abloh was born in 1980, in Illinois to Ghanaian immigrant parents. He studied civil engineering at the University of Wisconsin. After graduating from university, he interned at Fendi in 2009. Back then, he purchased less popular Polo Ralph Lauren items, designed them with his own print and re-sold them at higher prices. He collaborated with IKEA, Evian and McDonalds and was scouted to Louis Vuitton in 2018. His designs were worn by rapper Kayne West, Beyonce, Kim Kardashian and Timothée Chalamet.
“Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom,” said Bernard Arnault, Chairman and CEO of LVMH Moët Hennessy.
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