An Inside Look at the Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1 by Virgil Abloh Exhibition
Following a moving tribute during the 2021 edition of Miami’s Art Basel, Louis Vuitton is once again eulogizing the late Virgil Abloh with a new exhibition highlighting the designer’s streetwear bona fides. Taking to a warehouse in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, the luxury goods behemoth is displaying all 47 designs of its zeitgeist shattering collaboration with Nike — informed by Abloh’s unique sartorial acumen.
Upon arriving at the venue, spectators are greeted by a giant statue sculpted in a mid-breakdance pose, rendered in a summery palette of blazing oranges and reds to match the façade of the building.
Once inside, the footwear — nine of which were only produced commercially — is arranged on various surfaces throughout the primary exhibition space and almost always above the viewer’s eyeline, providing an insight into Abloh’s wide ranging and distinct aesthetic intuition. Complementary LED screens showcase a selection of pieces in three-dimensional renderings that move around, while two larger screens, activated by motion sensors, allow visitors to digitally disassemble a pair of sneakers to witness its savoir-faire. A large screen also displays the brand’s artisans working on the sneakers in an atelier setting, bolstering the elevated craftsmanship inherent in each creation.
A large treehouse installation — an emblem of Abloh’s reverence towards the innocence of childhood — sits at the back of the space. Walking up the stairs to a DJ setup, attendees will spot a sneaker trunk that reimagines the Maison’s luggage heritage in a contemporary fashion, as well as studio renderings mapping Abloh’s creative process.
To coincide with this endeavour, Louis Vuitton has also installed large globes around New York City announcing the exhibition and inviting ardent fans and curious onlookers alike to witness this tribute to Abloh’s iconoclastic merging of high fashion and street culture.
The Louis Vuitton x Nike “Air Force 1” exhibition is on view now at Greenpoint Terminal Warehouse in Brooklyn, New York until May 31st.