Louis Vuitton Pays tribute to Designer Virgil Abloh

Louis Vuitton’s first ever U.S. fashion show turned into a somber yet whimsical tribute to groundbreaking designer Virgil Abloh days after his death.

The Miami menswear event, an unofficial kickoff to the prestigious Art Basel fair, had been in the works for months. Guests were ferried by yachts to the star-studded affair held on an island. Celebrity attendees, including Kim Kardashian West and her daughter North, Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, model Bella Hadid, Joe Jonas, Maluma and Pharrell, arrived in sleek LV monogrammed silver speedboats.

Kid Cudi and Erykah Badu performed at an after-party.

Abloh, who died Sunday after a lengthy battle with cancer, was known for pushing boundaries as the head of the legendary French fashion house, thanks to his childlike curiosity and an eagerness to instill a sense of playfulness. His groundbreaking fusions of streetwear and high couture made him one of the most celebrated tastemakers.

A focal point of the show was a giant, red LV monogrammed hot air balloon that puffed flames as Abloh’s voice was heard in the background.

The brand’s CEO Michael Burke said Abloh’s wife and family wanted the show to go on. He had just spoken to the young designer on Saturday night, describing the inspiration for the show as a coming of age of sorts because “inspiring and empowering younger generations defined who he was.”

Abloh had a prominent influence in streetwear. He interned with Ye at the LVMH brand Fendi, was the rapper’s creative director and scored a Grammy nomination as art director for the 2011 Ye-Jay-Z album “Watch the Throne.”

-AP

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