Louis Vuitton: Menswear AW20
Rewriting the 1974 Beatles classic in Paris today, Virgil Abloh showed a story of Louis in the sky with diamonds. The sky: quite literally, a boxed room plastered with cartoonish prints of clouds, with giant versions of objects you’d usually find in a design studio scattered throughout, making you feel like stepping into one of René Magritte’s paintings. The diamonds: a grand range of Louis Vuitton’s signature luggage, now revisited and distorted in a discourse of trompe l’oeil in order to follow the surrealist theme of Abloh’s AW20 collection for the French Maison.
Focusing on the abstraction of the familiar, he embarked on a mission to define the world of streetwear the second time round. According to Abloh, streetwear 2.0 includes tonal leather suiting, large faux fur coats, crystal embroideries and full looks printed with that same imagery of the clouded blue sky. A bold suggestion, but this is Virgil Abloh – where he goes, the masses follow. His show also marked the return of the somewhat forgotten ombré print, which was all the rage in the womenswear of the early 2010s. And then for the biggest surprise – the exuberant ruffles came out of nowhere as they built voluminous silhouettes of suits and shirts which could have easily been part of Cecil Beaton’s own wardrobe.
By this point, it’s clear that Abloh’s creativity is expressed through a unique vernacular which is going through constant change. If this was heaven on earth, where is he going next? Only Virgil know.
Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans.