It’s been a great year for #BlackExcellence, and in more outstanding news, Virgil Abloh, the Ghanian-American founder of the haute streetwear label Off-White and a longtime creative director for Kanye West, will be the next artistic director of men’s wear at Louis Vuitton, one of the oldest and most powerful European houses in the luxury business. This appointment is definitely a step in the right direction for diversity and is an excitingly radical change for the fashion industry.
He becomes Louis Vuitton’s first African-American artistic director, and one of the few black designers at the top of a French heritage house. Olivier Rousteing is the creative director of Balmain, and Ozwald Boateng, from Britain, was the designer for Givenchy men’s wear from 2003 to 2007.
Louis Vuitton’s chairman Michael Burke is particularly excited about Abloh’s innate creativity and disruptive approach which has made him so relevant not just in the world of fashion, but also in popular culture. From founding his radical haute streetwear label Off-White which promotes diversity and positive social change, to being long time creative director for Kanye West, Abloh’s work speaks for itself; diverse, disruptive and immensely creative.
Vogue Editor Edward Enninful describes the disruptive designer as one of the few designers who truly marries street culture with high fashion. Abloh interned at Fendi where he first met Louis Vuitton CEO Michael Burke. As a keen collaborator, he has partnered with numerous brands including Jimmy Choo, Nike and soon Ikea.
While Abloh has been a bit hesitant about discussing race in fashion, he recently spoke to the New York Times saying “show a younger generation that there is no one way anyone in this kind of position has to look”. His message is an affirmation of the positive social change he has long campaigned for through his work. It is a truly exciting and dynamic time in the world of fashion and we hope our SCHICK Man brings a fresh, innovative and relatable perspective to things.