Born in 1980 of Ghanaian parents, Virgil Abloh was raised in Rockford, Illinois. He obtained a degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a Masters of Architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
His career path, however, was to take an artistic turn. In 2009, he worked as an intern at Fendi Roma, being inspired by fashion be became a sensation when he launched Pyrex Vision streetwear, which he replaced in 2014 with OFF-WHITE , his influential brand of high-end streetwear.
In has also worked as the art director on the Jay-Z / Kanye West album Watch the Throne, for which he was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Recording Package.
Within a year, Abloh had been nominated for the LVMH prize.
And in 2017, OFF-WHITE won best Urban Luxe brand at London’s Fashion Awards. His success also came from a vast fanbase of millennials who follow his trends on Instagram; OFF-WHITE has 2.7m followers and Abloh, himself, has 1.4m.
In March 2018, Abloh was named artistic director of Louis Vuitton’s menswear line, making him the first person of African descent to fill that position, as well as being one of the few black designers at the head a major French fashion house.