From Drake to Gigi Hadid, celebs mourn the death of designer Virgil Abloh

The Louis Vuitton artistic director and Off-White founder died from cancer at the age of 41.
November 29, 2021 1:51 p.m. EST
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Hollywood has been in mourning since the death of 41-year-old Virgil Abloh on November 28. A beloved designer, he was artistic director for Louis Vuitton, and founder of his own industry-disrupting brand Off-White. Abloh’s family announced the news over the weekend on Instagram, writing that he had been living with "a rare, aggressive form of cancer" called cardiac angiosarcoma, and had been undergoing “numerous challenging treatments."

The designer had been especially beloved among the fashion and music crowd, and had also built a name for himself by creating groundbreaking album cover art.

The loss was felt deeply, by fellow designers, models, and music artists. “My heart is broken," wrote Pharrell Williams, on Twitter and Instagram. "Virgil you were a kind, generous, thoughtful creative genius. Your work as a human and your work as a spiritual being will live forever. Sending love and light to your wife, children, family and day ones. You're with the Master now, shine."

In his own Instagram statement, Drake wrote, "My plan is to touch the sky 1000 more times for you…love you eternally brother 🕊thank you for everything."

Questlove also shared his thoughts, writing, “Virgil Abloh was art…The teachable lesson here is disrupt. Provoke. Be controversial. Push buttons. Be a conversation piece….live as a true artist."

More moving statements came from the many models who had worked closely with the designer and developed close bonds over the years.

Alongside a series of images of them together, Gigi Hadid wrote on Instagram, "I am heartbroken by the loss of my dear friend, and a friend to the world, Virgil Abloh. He was 1 of 1. His kindness and energetic generosity left a lasting impression on every life he touched— he made everyone feel seen and special. He will be deeply missed, cherished, and celebrated by me and all the people and industries that have been lucky enough to work around & know the true supernova behind this man."

Sister Bella wrote, "Im at a loss .. He was someone to everyone. That was the magic power he held. He made every person he came across feel special in whatever way he possibly could. Even when the world felt sad, he brought laughter and color and beauty." 

In her own post, Hailey Bieber wrote about how Abloh had designed her wedding dress, adorned with his specific style and which she wore during her 2018 wedding to Justin Bieber.

She wrote, “Virgil completely changed the way I looked at street style and fashion, the way he looked at things inspired me deeply. I will never be able to fully express how grateful I am to have known him and worked with him, from walking on his runways to having him design my wedding dress and all the other amazing moments in between, I felt he was always rooting for me. He was someone who always brought life, charisma, love and fun to any situation, and every room he walked into. A once in a generation creative mind that is so rare and I’ll never forget his impact. We love you Virgil.”

Kendall Jenner, too, took to Instagram writing, “i can’t believe i’m writing this. if you had the privilege of knowing Virgil, you were one of the lucky ones. he was the kindest, most positive, humble, joyful, and full of light person i have ever known.”

Fellow designers Marc Jacobs and Jerry Lorenzo also weighed in. Jacobs wrote, “I am so sorry to read this. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and loved ones. May you Rest In Peace and Power dear Virgil."

Lorenzo added, “Thank you, you opened both physical and mental doors for me, that allowed me to see what was possible for my life."

Another to note is Diplo’s Instagram statement, which particularly stood out thanks to its optimistic view. The DJ and music producer wrote, "Not gonna write something sad here because in 41 years you were here you changed the world / culture more than anyone I know. You already lived 100 lifetimes for what you accomplished and you did it on your own terms. 🤍 you forever. No one is gonna break your scoring record."



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