DJ and designer Virgil Abloh has died, aged 41

"Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary; he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom"

DJ and designer Virgil Abloh has died, aged 41.

The DJ and influential fashion designer for Louis Vuitton and Off White passed away today (November 28) after suffering with cancer for several years.

Abloh kept his diagnosis private and did not share any details of his illness publicly.

LVMH, the French holding company that owns luxury fashion brand Louis Vuitton, said in a statement: “We are all shocked after this terrible news,” said LVMH boss Bernard Arnault. “Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary; he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom.

“The LVMH family joins me in this moment of great sorrow, and we are all thinking of his loved ones after the passing of their husband, their father, their brother or their friend.”

An official statement on Abloh’s Instagram page read: “We are devastated to announce the passing of our beloved Virgil Abloh, a fiercely devoted father, husband, son, brother, and friend. He is survived by his loving wife Shannon Abloh, his children Lowe Abloh and Grey Abloh, his sister Edwina Abloh, his parents Nee and Eunice Abloh, and numerous dear friends and colleagues.

“For over two years, Virgil valiantly battled a rare, aggressive form of cancer, cardiac angiosarcoma. He chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture.

“Through it all, his work ethic, infinite curiosity, and optimism never wavered. Virgil was driven by his dedication to his craft and to his mission to open doors for others and create pathways for greater equality in art and design. He often said, ‘Everything I do is for the 17-year-old version of myself,’ believing deeply in the power of art to inspire future generations.

We thank you all for your love and support, and we ask for privacy as we grieve and celebrate Virgil’s life.”

You can read the full post here:

Artists from the music world, as well as figures from fashion and design, have all been paying their tributes to Abloh online.

Below the post announcing the news of his death, fashion designer Marc Jacobs wrote: “I am so sorry to read this. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and loved ones. May you rest in peace and power dear Virgil.”

Drake shared photos of himself and Abloh with the caption, “My plan is to touch the sky 1000 times for you”, while Kevin Abstract posted: “One of the most important artists of our times. Changed our culture forever. I am heartbroken.”

Finneas tweeted: “So sad to hear about passing of Virgil Abloh.” He went on to describe him as “an inspiration to so many and. of course an inspiration [to] me. Sending my love to his loved ones.”

You can see some of the many tributes here:

Abloh debuted his first fashion show for Louis Vuitton in 2018 at Paris Fashion Week and was joined by a host of musical guests for the occasion, including  Kid CudiDev Hynes, Playboi Carti and Steve Lacy.

As Abloh came out for his celebratory walk down the runway following his show, he and Kanye West shared a special moment as West hugged his long-term creative director in an emotional embrace.

Abloh emerged from his role as West’s creative director with ideas that first became noticed at Pyrex Vision, before he eventually went to work at both Off-White and Louis Vuitton.

Abloh also continued his work as a DJ. Back in January, Abloh released a track with serpentwithfeet called ‘Delicate Limbs’.

It followed his appearance on Lupe Fiasco and Kaelin Ellis’ ‘SHOES’ last year, and his remix of Michael Kiwanuka‘s ‘Solid Ground’.

This is a breaking news story – more to follow

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