Virgil Abloh becomes Louis Vuitton’s new mens artistic director

Virgil Abloh Louis Vuitton

LVMH has appointed Off-White designer Virgil Abloh to be the Artistic Director of Louis Vuitton’s Menswear.

Abloh is Louis Vuitton’s first African-American artistic director and succeeds Kim Jones. Jones for her part left the fashion house in January and in turn, joined Dior Homme succeeding Kris van Assche as its Creative Director.

Abloh confirmed the news in an Instagram post of a classic Louis Vuitton suitcase. ‘I feel elated,’ the 37-year-old told The New York Times on Sunday. ‘This opportunity to think through what the next chapter of design and luxury will mean at a brand that represents the pinnacle of luxury was always a goal in my wildest dreams. And to show a younger generation that there is no one way anyone in this kind of position has to look is a fantastically modern spirit in which to start.’

Abloh worked for Kanye West as Creative DirectorHautere launching haute street wear label Off-White in 2014. Last year, he collaborated with Nike as part of the “The Ten” project, designing his version of ten iconic sneakers.

Abloh’s appointment to Louis Vuitton also has an personal background: He and Michael Burke, Chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton, have known each other since 2006 when he was CEO of Fendi where Abloh was interning at the time. ‘Having followed with great interest Virgil’s ascent since he worked with me at Fendi in 2006, I am thrilled to see how his innate creativity and disruptive approach have made him so relevant, not just in the world of fashion but in popular culture today,’ Burke, said. ‘His sensibility towards luxury and savoir-faire will be instrumental in taking Louis Vuitton’s menswear into the future,’ he added.

Abloh’s first collection for Louis Vuitton will be shown at Paris Men’s Fashion Week in June.

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