The Death Of Virgil Abloh

The Tragic Loss of a Fashion and Music Icon

On Sunday, November 28, 2021, we lost a fashion and music icon: Virgil Abloh. Abloh passed away at the age of 41 after battling a rare type of cancer, cardiac angiosarcoma, for over two years. He was a loving father, husband, son, brother, and friend. He was also a famous entrepreneur, fashion designer, and DJ. Abloh centered his career around merging the gap between fashion and music. 

   The American designer rose from a Chicago kid obsessed with fashion, art, design, and culture to the artistic director of Louis Vuitton and the CEO of Off-White. Abloh designed everything from furniture for IKEA, refillable bottles for Evian, and even Big Mac cartons for McDonald’s. 

   His brand, Off-White, combines ideas of streetwear, luxury, art, music, and travel. His most famous work was ‘The Ten’ Collaboration with the brand Nike. Abloh re-designed ten of Nike’s iconic silhouettes into works that reflected both Nike and Off-White. These sneakers were limited releases and sold out rapidly, and some of the limited releases left the sneaker market hungry for more. The average price to buy one of these shoes from a reseller is around $830. The most expensive of all of the shoes is the Off-White x Air Jordan 1 High in the Chicago colorway, which now sells for around $7,000. This collaboration won Shoe of the Year at the FN Achievement Awards. 

   Virgil Abloh is not only famous for his Off-White works- he was also the first-ever African American artistic director at Louis Vuitton. He designed clothing for celebrities for various types of events. These two roles won him the International Designer of the Year Award at the GQ Men of the Year Awards in 2007 and the Urban Luxe Brand Award at The British Fashion Awards.

   Not only was Abloh an inspiration in the fashion industry, but he also made an impact around the music scene. At all of his runway shows, he would play music in an attempt to merge the fashion and music industries. He DJ’ed at many major events such as Lollapalooza, Camp Flog Gnaw, and Astroworld Fest. In the music industry, he became close friends with artist Kanye West, eventually getting hired as the creative director of Kanye’s Donda creative house. 

   On December 6th, his friends and family honored his life by hosting a memorial service in his hometown of Chicago in the Museum of Contemporary art. Many A-list celebrities that were close friends with Abloh gathered to pay their respects, including Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, Drake, Tyler The Creator, and more.

   Virgil Abloh will continue to be honored at fashion shows and music events. He was an inspiration to many and changed the music and fashion industry for the better. The impact he made will never be forgotten.