Late fashion designer Virgil Abloh is being honoured in a New York exhibition, featuring 47 pairs of Louis Vuitton Nike Air Force 1 sneakers he created before his death in November.
Nine shoes on display in the immersive show will be available for purchase in June.
Abloh, a close associate of Kanye West, was the artistic director of Louis Vuitton's menswear collection from 2018 until his death from cancer at age 41. He was responsible for bringing streetwear and a less elitist approach to the world of luxury.
A replica of the turntable set-up Abloh used as a DJ is featured, along with what organizers call "a magical treehouse symbolic of Virgil's own childhood dreams." Quotes from Abloh, who was also a visual artist, fill the room, with a floor of lights that create atmospheric patterns.
"He was one of a kind," Elle.com deputy editor Claire Stern said. "Not just in his creative skill set, but how he broke down barriers in fashion. Racially, socioeconomically, he let people in."
Installations of globes around New York City are promoting the free exhibit, which is on till 31 May at the Greenpoint Terminal Warehouse in Brooklyn.
"Virgil's impact on our culture and the fashion world especially was huge," Stern said. "I think this will be one of the first of many exhibits honoring him and his legacy, and his impact will be felt for generations to come."
In July 2021, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton gave Abloh a mandate to launch new brands and partner with existing ones in sectors beyond fashion.
The show comes after an auction by Sotheby's in February raised $25 million from the sale of some 200 Abloh Air Force One sneakers for a scholarship fund set up in Abloh's honour to support aspiring designers of Black, African American or African descent.
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