CHAPTER 3: VIRGIL ABLOH, THE REVOLUTIONARY
Born in Rockford, Illinois in 1980, Virgil Abloh is an artist, architect, engineer, creative director, and designer.
His parents are from Ghana. Trained as an architect (he also graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Civil Engineering), Virgil Abloh greatly benefited at the beginning of his career from the friendship of Kanye West whom he is the artistic adviser, to shine in the spotlight. He plays a capital role with the rapper since he deals as well with the brand merchandising as with set designing or album covers design.
He has been fashion-conscious early on: in 2009, he opens his RSVP Gallery concept store in his hometown of Chicago, before founding his first brand, Pyrex Vision, originally dedicated to the sale of Champion T-shirts and Ralph Lauren shirts bearing the Pyrex logo. Since then, he has been on LVMH group radar screen: as of 2015 indeed, he is among the finalists for the LVMH prize which will finally reward that year the French designer Jacquemus and the tandem Marques'Almeida.
Virgil Abloh has all that is necessary to seduce LVMH in 2018. First, the creative knows the culture of the group well: he had an internship at Fendi in 2008. Next, his taste for collaborations - Off-White has associated with Nike, with Jimmy Choo, with the Kith concept store, with Ikea etc. - is conducive to the formation of strong images, regularly renewable and immediately readable by the Instagram community. An aptitude that had in other times enabled Marc Jacobs to bring Louis Vuitton into the era of modernity and spectacle; or more recently, which enabled Kim Jones "to have internet explode” thanks to the collaboration initiated between Louis Vuitton and Suprême.
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