Celebrities react to the passion of fashion icon and pioneer Virgil Abloh who lost his private battle with cancer at age 41.
Yesterday the entire culture stopped as the passing of fashion pioneer Virgil Abloh was announced. He passed after a private battle with a rare aggressive heart cancer known as cardiac angiosarcoma. Virgil kept his battle private drawing parallels to actor Chadwick Boseman who privately battled colon cancer. And just like the late actor, Virgil’s passing came as a complete shock. Both stars were battling cancer at the same exact time in the photo below.
Virgil was a student of the school of Kanye West, fashion history, Hip-hop culture, and design. Virgil proved to brown and Black kids everywhere that we can take up space in traditionally white environments and excel without imposter syndrome. Virgil started out working for Kanye by helping on everything from his classic album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy to guiding Ye’s creative content company DONDA. He went on to have success in his own right with Pyrex, Off-White, and several dozens of collaborations with the biggest brands in the world. In 2018 Virgil would make history becoming the first African-American menswear designer for Louis Vuitton and third ever at a major fashion house. This didn’t come without drama as this is something he and Kanye fought for and dreamed of while putting in the work. Naturally, Kanye felt conflicting emotions when a deal was pulled from him with the fashion house then later Virgil’s position was announced.
When Virgil debuted his first collection for Louis Vuitton Kanye was in the front row and as Virgil walked to close the show, he made his way over to Ye. Virgil and Ye shed tears in front of the world and shared a moment that changed everything about fashion going forward. Even if you didn’t like either of them you witnessed the come up of two Black men who fought to open doors in high-fashion for people of color when everyone told them it wasn’t possible and they succeeded and proved everyone wrong.
Virgil was in touch with the culture like no one else at his level and yet he was still accessible. He often responded to young designers, up-and-coming creatives, and anyone who caught his attention just to let them know they aren’t going unnoticed. Being easily accessible, he touched the lives of many and not just the rich and famous. After the announcement of his passing everyone in between sent condolences via social media. We’ve compiled a long list of love sent to Virgil and his family which you can view over the next few pages.
My heart is broken
Virgil you were a kind, generous, thoughtful creative genius
your work as a human and your work as a spiritual being will live forever
Sending love and light to your wife, children, family and day ones
you’re with the Master now, shine
— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) November 28, 2021
RIP Virgil Abloh , you will be missed.
It was an honor to work with you. A true creative genius.
— 방탄소년단 (@BTS_twt) November 28, 2021
One of a kind. A true visionary and trailblazer. Your impact will leave an everlasting legacy. ⁰ ⁰Thank you, Virgil. From the adidas family 🤍 pic.twitter.com/Z9Bhmz8HlM
— adidas Originals (@adidasoriginals) November 28, 2021
Hit the flip for more.
Virgil worked with almost every major brand you can think of from Nike, Mercedes Benz, Moet, Ikea, Moncler, Umbro, Levis, and many many more. Through his art, he touched millions and disrupted fashion, music, and art forever. Outside of his work at giants like LVMH, he was also a husband, father, and friend to many.
Too soon Virgil. You will be missed from this world man.
— Idris Elba (@idriselba) November 28, 2021
Aside from celebrity condolences, creatives Virgil inspired and influenced also weighed in on his passing. Yesterday everyone began sharing the inspiration he dropped off in their messages and Instagram DM’s and it really shows what separated him from everyone else. He was never a typical celebrity or too big to be reached and always gave people their flowers.
RIP @virgilabloh 🙏🏽
— YOON (@YOON_AMBUSH) November 28, 2021
virgil and I spoke once and this one of the things that he said to me. I remember reading it and being in awe. I will always hold that moment close to me.
rip to a man that redefined culture and how we see fashion today. his impact and legacy will live on forever. pic.twitter.com/A5ZiPFnhrU
— Cole Bennett (@_ColeBennett_) November 28, 2021
Horrible news about Virgil Abloh. And, of course, thinking about Chad, who was just a few years older. How these Black men suffered in silence. The barriers they broke, despite the toll it was taking. And what it says about US that they chose to fight silently. F*ck cancer.
— April is in LA (@ReignOfApril) November 28, 2021
Virgil Abloh lived the shit out of his life — let that be the lesson.
— Lauren Sherman (@lapresmidi) November 28, 2021
— BIGNOAH 👨🏽💻 (@BIGNOAH256) November 28, 2021
Thank you Virgil for showing the Black and Brown kids that anything is possible
— RACHEL RUBÍ (@rachelrubies) November 28, 2021
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