Virgil Abloh Dies Of Cancer At Age 41
The Off-White founder and artistic director of Louis Vuitton had been privately battling cancer over the past two years.
Virgil Abloh, the founder of Off-White and the men’s artistic director of Louis Vuitton, died of cancer on Sunday, confirmed by a statement released on his Instagram account. For the last two years, Abloh had been privately battling a rare form of cancer called cardiac angiosarcoma. “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,” the statement reads.
The fashion designer, DJ, and cultural pioneer forever shifted the luxury fashion landscape by revolutionizing streetwear and contemporary culture. Abloh was the first Black fashion designer to lead the Louis Vuitton’s menswear division as well as successfully founding the iconic fashion label Off-White. He worked with an endless amount of creatives and artists, providing them with the support and resources to pursue their dreams. Many recognized Abloh for his tenacious work ethic – 90 hour work weeks were his norm.
Alboh’s generosity and commitment to creating opportunities for those who would otherwise be overlooked brought authenticity and humanity to his craft. He started the Post-Modern Scholarship Fund to provide tuition support for young Black students, invited 3,000 students to his first Louis Vuitton runway show, supported skateboarders and surfers in Ghana, and donated funds to fix parks and facilities in Chicago, his beloved hometown.
His close friend, Kanye West, dedicated the latest installment of his Sunday Service series to honor the passing of the creative icon. The Sunday Service Choir performed their take on Adele’s “Easy On Me,” followed by a message that read, “IN LOVING MEMORY OF VIRGIL ABLOH, THE CREATIVE DIRECTOR OF DONDA.”
Alboh is survived by his wife Shannon, and children Lowe, 8, and Grey, 5, as well as his parents Nee and Eunice and sister Edwina.