Pharrell Williams drew his global audience to Paris' oldest bridge, Pont Neuf, to present his debut collection at Louis Vuitton.
Among those in the audience were Rihanna, Beyonce, Jay-Z, LeBron James and Zendaya.
In an interview with AFP before the show, the artist said that he was conscious of the traumatic history behind the current dominance of black culture that has allowed him to take over at the world's most lucrative fashion label. "We wish that our culture and our people didn't have to suffer so hard in order to get us here," said Williams ahead of his debut as menswear director for Louis Vuitton. “It's not lost on me that a lot of people died, a lot of people lost their lives and suffered... to get us to these positions.”
“The show itself played it fairly safe, drawing on Louis Vuitton's familiar check patterns and leather work, adding in some pixelated patterns and some military-style camouflage. The classic bags came out in primary colours and a couple of souped-up karts even made their way down the catwalk carrying piles of classic Vuitton luggage,” the AFP report states.
“The soundtrack made its way from stately classical music to full-blown gospel disco,” it adds.
In the AFP interview, Williams spoke about his predecessor Virgil Abloh, who died from cancer in 2021.
"I collaborated with him on a couple of things," said Williams. "Spiritually, his energy is very much still here."