Louis Vuitton designer Virgil Abloh dies of cancer aged 41
41-year-old American-born son of Ghanaian immigrants Virgil Abloh, who became fashion's highest-profile Black designer and the creative mind behind Louis Vuitton's menswear collections, died on Sunday following a two-year battle with a rare form of cancer.
Abloh, who also worked as a DJ and visual artist, had been the men's artistic director for Vuitton, the world's biggest luxury brand, since March 2018.
Abloh founded the Italian luxury streetwear label Off-White, in which LVMH took a 60% stake earlier this year. He was a former collaborator with rapper and fashion designer Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, who dedicated his latest Sunday Service to Abloh, according to billboard.com.
"Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom," Bernard Arnault, the billionaire boss of Luis Vuitton's owner, French fashion conglomerate LVMH, said in a statement Sunday.
Abloh is survived by his wife, Sannon, his children Lowe and Grey, his sister, Edwina, and his parents, Nee and Eunice. According to The New York Times, Abloh died in Chicago.
"For over two years, Virgil valiantly battled a rare, aggressive form of cancer, cardiac angiosarcoma," said a message posted to his Instagram account. "He chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture."