Virgil Abloh portayed by Anders Christian Madsen

Virgil Abloh portayed by Anders Christian Madsen

Eclectic fashion designer, art director and entrepreneur Virgil Abloh, who held a degree in Engineering and a master’s degree in architecture, was the first American of African descent to lead the menswear line of a major French fashion house. He died prematurely in November 2021. His first work for Louis Vuitton in June 2018 changed the world of fashion for ever: the king of streetwear – as he was generally known – had succeeded in raising street culture to the level of haute couture.

This book, written by Anders Christian Madsen (a close associate of Abloh’s), paints an intimate portrait of a man who was born to break the rules, both on and off the catwalk.

Virgil Abloh. (© Bogdan “Chilldays” Plakov)

The book has eight chapters, one for each of the eight Louis Vuitton collections and shows Virgil orchestrated, and also includes his entire catalogue of sneakers. Readers are immersed in a unique world full of rich cultural references, from the Wizard of Oz to ’90s hip-hop and all the music he loved so much. According to Madsen: “As a black creative, with no formal training in fashion design, no list of established fashion houses on his CV […] Abloh saw himself as an infiltrator in high fashion: a true outsider who would become a groundbreaking figure.” Which is precisely what he became.

The Louis Vuitton men’s temporary residency, Walk in the Park, previewed the men’s fall-winter 2021 collection in Soho, New York in June and July, 2021. The rainbow-hued neon arches were inspired by the Pont Neuf in Paris. (© Louis Vuitton/Brad Dickson)
Checkerboard Sail and Multicolor Louis Vuitton Nike mid-top Air Force 1 overlaid with custom Vuitton graffiti by the iconic tattoo artist Ghusto Leon. (© Louis Vuitton Malletier)

Louis Vuitton: Virgil Abloh
Anders Christian Madsen
Assouline, 2002
360 pages, € 1,200 (Ultimate edition)

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