Virgil Abloh passed on last November and I still haven't been able to bring myself to write about him, I continue to be in the absence of a conclusive summary that adequately articulates his impact on me, which is why I finally made the shadow tribute. I look up to him as a role model and mentor by proxy, he's a true interdisciplinary artist - there's not many people who are revered for being at the top of so many games. Virgil es forever. No one at his level leaves a treasure trove of tools for the next generation of BIPOC creatives to leverage so they don't have to duplicate common mistakes or let gatekeeping obscure their potential. It's inspired me to get back to blogging to share my experience navigating the art world as a disabled, brown, queer woman, in hopes of easing someone else's worries or fears that ultimately we all face, even though so few of us talk about it. I've circled back to these links numerous times over the past few years, so many gems of wisdom sprinkled throughout. We were too lucky to have him.
Summer 2018 I rewatched Virgil's lecture he gave at Harvard's Graduate School of Design - "INSERT COMPLICATED TITLE HERE." If you don't have the time to dedicate to it right now, feel free to review my notes. Mostly everything is lifted verbatim from his lecture, I only sprinkled in a few personal clarifications. This was a game changer for me:
what’s my personal signature? (this began to develop when you were a young child, these are the things you're impulsively drawn to, not learned in school)
Notes on Virgil’s “PERSONAL DESIGN LANGUAGE”
1: READYMADE - NEW IDEA BASED ON RECOGNIZABLE PARTS OF HUMAN EMOTION, IRONY
know where you're at in the lineage of art movements
2: “FIGURES OF SPEECH” OR THE “QUOTES”
insert humanity into conversation. you open up when you laugh. figurative and precise. designing with a keyboard.
3: 3% APPROACH
only edit something 3% away from the original form. make you recognize the thing you’ve already consumed.
4: A COMPROMISE BETWEEN 2 DISTRICT SIMILAR OR DISSIMILAR NOTATIONS
shorthand between luxury and streetware. internal measuring stick.
5: SIGNS OF “WORK IN PROCESS” - AGAIN HUMAN INTERACTION
another humanity thing. you don’t need to be a perfectionist. your hand and brain will tell you when you’re finished
6: A SOCIETAL COMMENTARY - HAS A REASON TO EXIST NOW
an output for me has to have a reason to exist
7: SPEAKING TO THE TOURIST & PURIST SIMULTANEOUSLY
driving principle. the tourist and purist has to meet somewhere. if we’re not interchanging w regular people, we’re self-serving - as fun as design is.
the doorstop interruption
embed art into something universal
functionality and figurative value
add contemporary value, on top of it’s function
oversaturation shouldn’t be discouraging, we have a bigger community
not like fighting to be different. owning my own voice in this sea of differentness where everyone's trying to make a mark
think countryside to city
design has to work. art does not.
make impossible products
it’s important not to be precious
find new space for your voice
the zig-zag approach finds new space, linear thinking results in copies of past productions. find the opposite and go there.
realize different ideas in different spaces
get all the way close to that information, what does it look like once the barriers been broken?
canary---yellow.com/ (scroll to the bottom left & find LV SHOWNOTES 1-7, highly suggest diving in)
lectures on youtube
Virgil for Vogue
Louis Vuitton Men's Spring-Summer 2020 Fashion Show
MUSIC JOURNEY for Louis Vuitton
VIRGIL ABLOH THE LOOP
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Here is where I share announcements of all shapes and sizes, and deep dive into my art and music making practices. I aim to demystify the creative process for BIPOC women & NBs.
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