Virgil Abloh was so much more than a ‘hip-hop fashion designer’
Past tributes to Virgil Abloh have described him as a “genius,” “visionary,” and “the meaning of fashion itself.” So when the Grammy Awards memorialized Abloh over the weekend as a “hip-hop fashion designer,” those familiar with his body of work were understandably upset.
It’s difficult to apply one title to Abloh when he held so many. He was the founder of Off-White, artistic director of Louis Vuitton’s menswear, and longtime creative director for Kanye West. Somehow, Abloh also found time to work as a DJ, architect, and visual artist with exhibitions in some of the world’s top museums. As a creative leader in so many spaces, giving Abloh the title “hip-hop fashion designer” felt like an egregious disservice.