• Ebonee Bailey

Virgil Abloh's Exclusive Art Exhibit "Figures of Speech" is now Open

There’s an exclusive exhibition going on at the High Museum of Art located in Atlanta now through March 8; curated by artist, designer, and the latest creative director of men’s wear for Louis Vuitton, Virgil Abloh.

A custom LV duffle bag designed by Virgil Abloh shown at the High Museum's Virgil Abloh: Figures of Speech exhibition

The exhibit looks at Abloh's creative work over the span of nearly two decades through the presentations of prototypes, product designs, finished artworks, and fashion according to the High Museum of Art.

Tickets are usually $14.50 Monday-Sunday, however, the High Museum is free every second Sunday of the month so this is perfect for a free hangout or date night. The next free dates are February 9, 2020, and March 8, 2020 (the last day of the exhibition).

Born to a Ghanian seamstress and paint company manager, it’s really no surprise that Rockford, IL-based Abloh can make an art exhibition that pays homage to visual art and fashion.

By starting out as an architectural graduate student at Illinois Institute of Technology, he was first inspired to actually go into fashion by the intricate design of Illinois Tech’s McCormick Tribune Campus Center that was the first US building designed by Dutch deconstructivist architect Rem Koolhaas. He used this inspiration to start making shirts and created his own fashion/design blog known as The Brilliance. In 2009, he interned for Fendi with Chicago rapper Kanye West (whom he had been friends with since 2002) and they officially became business partners.

This twenty-year survey shows how I am constantly looking for a way to transform myself from consumer to producer, navigating a path between “Tourist” and “Purist,” between the literal and the figurative. –Virgil Abloh

First, he and Don C, streetwear designer and also a friend of West, launched their own clothing line RSVP Gallery, exclusively in Chicago. Then, he was selected by Kanye to be the artistic director for Kanye and Jay-Z’s joint album Watch The Throne and then the creative director of West’s personal creative agency DONDA. By growing into himself, Abloh developed his own brand, PYREX VISION which quickly gained popularity amongst the youth and streetwear enthusiasts in the early 2010s.

PYREX then turned into his own Milan fashion house Off-White, which has been worn by Kanye and even was the brand of Hailey Beiber’s (maiden name Baldwin) wedding dress. Off-White has had collaborations with Nike, SSENSE, and just recently a sculpture line with IKEA. His innovative works with Off-White led to him being selected as the latest creative director of Men’s Fashion Wear for Louis Vuitton in 2018. But now, we get to celebrate Virgil's creativity not just as a commodity but, as actual art.


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