Virgil Abloh was far from normal. He took creativity to the next level. He would question if something was possible, challenge it and then overcome it. He always proved that anything can be done if you truly believe in yourself and take your time. He proved that with his own fashion house Off-White and serving as the menswear creative director for Louis Vuitton.
While I was watching the Louis Vuitton Spring 2023 Menswear collection, some words came to my mind: Magical, creative, imaginary, out of the box (in terms of thinking), playful, light, airy, fun, Virgil.
It’s not a shock that Virgil embodied all of that and more, he was a creative mastermind, a barrier-breaking designer. A genre-bending artist. A visionary. Before his untimely death back in November of 2021, Virgil had his hands in just about every creative space you can think of. He was a DJ, graphic designer, and furniture designer. He was involved in animation, music, film, museum curation, and more. For Virgil, there was no limit. He lived his life with integrity, humility, kindness, and grace.
“You know who I am most inspired by? That kid that hasn’t had the chance to showcase their brand yet. Those kids motivate the work I do every day. That’s the muse for me: the next generation. And I want my work to inspire people like them” – Virgil Abloh
The team at Louis Vuitton was left with the mission to carry out what Virgil would of wanted for the Spring 2023 Menswear collection. Still not filling the position yet for who would be taking over, the people that knew him best (His LV team) put the show together, constantly reminding themselves of what Virgil would always say “everything is possible”.
I can tell you one thing, they captured his imaginary mind perfectly (to me anyway), words can not express how moving this show was. It was the ultimate tribute to a man who was taken way too soon.
The marching band of Florida A&M University out of Tallahassee (amazing by the way). The procession of athletic French LV flag wavers. The Yellow Brick Road runway/Race Track occupied the courtyard of the Louvre. Kendrick Lamar in his crown of thorns sent out his amazing lyrics to Virgil from his seat where he sat beside Naomi Campbell, who could not help but bob her head to the beat and feel what everyone else felt: Virgil was here.
This was not a sad day, everyone in attendance was reminded of how iconic Virgil was and still is. This show was a celebration. A celebration of his life, creativity, diversity and beauty, all of what Virgil was. Since his death, Off-White announced that their new Creative Director would be Ib Kamara who has worked with many people and brands in the fashion industry, as for Louis Vuitton, word on the street is that Martine Rose (the British-Jamaican designer who founded her label in 2007) might be the women to fill that spot. Whoever picks up where Virgil left off will have some pretty big shoes to fill. Whatever happens, we’ll keep you posted.
Although Virgil was not here for a long time, It brings me joy to know that he was able to see his work come to fruition. Fear didn’t stop him, even if he did feel apprehensive or uneasy, he pushed through. He didn’t waste a single moment, that’s a life lesson. Live a life that’s a life worth living so when you reach the end you can look back and see that you accomplished something that will impact generations to come.
Have a look at some of our favourite pieces from the Louis Vuitton Spring 2023 Menswear collection
Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com
I encourage you to watch the show for yourself, you will feel inspired to tap into your creativity.
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