Virgil Abloh Clarifies His 'Streetwear Is Dead' Comment, Previews NIGO® x Louis Vuitton Collab

Abloh said his initial comments came from a place of not realizing "that things can even go that far."


Image via Getty/Claudio Lavenia


While reflecting on the end of a decade in a Dazed interview back in December, Virgil Abloh was asked to predict what he thought might happen to "the idea of streetwear" in the 2020s. Abloh's response, as seen in ensuing headlines, fell firmly into the waves-making category.

"I would definitely say it's gonna die, you know? Like, its time will be up," Abloh said at the time, adding that he looked forward to a more archive-centered approach in the future that would include greater emphasis on utilizing vintage pieces. Following the quote's initiation of an online discourse, Abloh advised everyone to "read all of any interview" instead of relying on "just the clickbait."

what we do is called design. it’s not limited to being called “streetwear”. design-is-design. the moral of the story is beware of whatever box your labeled as. challenge it. defy it. do not be defined by it✨

— virgil abloh (@virgilabloh) December 20, 2019

also, read all of any interview. never just the clickbait. never✨

— virgil abloh (@virgilabloh) December 20, 2019

Now, in a new Vogueinterview conducted around a preview his upcoming Louis Vuitton x NIGO® collab, Abloh has expanded on his comments and assessed their unintended impact.

"I'm such a novice, I don't realize that things can even go that far," Abloh explained, noting that the comments in question originated from a "riffing" section he had in his kitchen. "I'm a little bit naive in that way."

Elaborating further, Abloh connected the assessment to his new collab, which is the latest example of streetwear's many evolutions throughout history.

"I didn’t say it to be polarizing," he said. "I think that in the context of this conversation with Nigo—if you speak to anyone that's been in streetwear for the last 15 years, it's always had this sort of nine lives, dying and coming back, and dying and coming back. There's so many first generation streetwear brands, stores, and retailers . . . Nigo has had projects before; he's had many a brand, many identities within streetwear. Partially what I meant that 'it will die' is that new things like tailoring from guys like Nigo and me will be born from the regeneration of it."

Elsewhere, Abloh revealed the most important things he's learned from working with NIGO® (generosity and "a sense of detail"), as well as credited the BAPE creator with coining the LV² name.

"It's something for Nigo and I specifically. It's like a new rap group," he said.

Read Abloh's full chat with Nicole Phelps here.

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