Virgil Abloh, the prolific fashion designer known for styling stars like Kanye West and Kid Cudi, died on Sunday after a private battle with cancer. He was 41.
Abloh’s death was announced in a post to his Instagram as well as a tweet by LVMH, the parent company of Louis Vuitton, where Abloh served as the men’s artistic director since 2018.
“We are shocked after this terrible news. Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and a great wisdom,” LVMH’s CEO Bernard Arnault said in the tweeted statement.
On Instagram, a post to Abloh’s account said that the designer had been privately battling a rare and aggressive form of cancer, known as cardiac angiosarcoma, which affects the heart.
“He chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture. Through it all, his work ethic, infinite curiosity, and optimism never wavered,” the statement read.
Abloh’s career made history in the fashion world when he became the first Black artistic director to helm a division of a top French design house.