Louis Vuitton has announced the appointment of Pharrell Williams as its new men’s creative director, effective immediately upon announcement. The fashion house has also announced that Williams’ first collection for Louis Vuitton under his new role will be revealed in June, during the Men’s Fashion Week in Paris.
Williams, perhaps known best for his career within the music industry, is a revered figure within the fashion world in his own right. Awarded Esquire’s “Best Dressed Man in the World” in 2005, his former experience as a fashion designer is reflected in previous collaborations with Louis Vuitton and Chanel, and his own Billionaire Boys Club and Ice Cream apparel brands.
“I am glad to welcome Pharrell back home, after our collaborations in 2004 and 2008 for Louis Vuitton, as our new Men’s Creative Director,” said Pietro Beccari, chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton.
“His creative vision beyond fashion will undoubtedly lead Louis Vuitton toward a new and exciting chapter.”
Speculation has been rife over who would be appointed as the luxury house’s Men’s Creative Director since the passing of Virgil Abloh in November 2021. A personal friend and collaborator of Abloh, Williams’ appointment is being hailed as a continuation of the merge between high luxury and contemporary streetwear fashion.
In an official statement, Louis Vuitton declared that Williams is a “visionary”, adding that “the way in which he breaks boundaries across the various worlds he explores aligns with Louis Vuitton’s status as a cultural maison, reinforcing its values of innovation, pioneer spirit and entrepreneurship.”
The appointment of the 13-time Grammy Award winner and two-time Academy Award nominated artist is significant for both the company and the fashion industry at large.
Confirming the growing usher in of the new age of the celebrity fashion designer, Williams is undoubtedly popular with the younger generations for both his streetwear aesthetics and pioneering experimentation with gender norms within fashion. This was reflected most recently in his gender neutral line for Adidas, but trails back to public appearances in pink Chanel cardigans and his firm embrace of Phoebe Philo for Celine’s womenswear in 2017.
Louis Vuitton’s parent company LMVH – of which Louis Vuitton is the main brand – has embarked on several recent collaborations with artists, including the recent partnership between Japanese sculpture Yayoi Kusama and Louis Vuitton.