Figures of Speech

Virgil Abloh announces his debut exhibition in the Middle East
By Ella Joyce | Fashion | 8 October 2021
Above:

Virgil Abloh, “dollar a gallon” II, 2019. Mixed media. Private Collection. Courtesy of The Gymnastics Art Institute & Virgil Abloh Art Studio and Design Practice. ©️ 2021.

A mid-career retrospective of creative powerhouse Virgil Abloh is set to be exhibited at Doha’s Fire Station gallery. Organised by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and specially adapted by Qatar Museums, Figures of Speech will offer an intimate dive into Abloh’s extensive artistic career. Having previously been on view at the MCA Chicago, the High Museum of Art Atlanta and is currently on view at the ICA Boston, this latest move marks the first time the acclaimed artist and designer has shown his work in the Middle East.

Virgil Abloh, “PSA”, 2019. Nylon. Private Collection. Courtesy of The Gymnastics Art Institute & Virgil Abloh Art Studio and Design Practice. ©️ 2021

Having honed his interests in the arts from an early age inspired by the urban culture that surrounded him in Chicago, Abloh went on to study civil engineering and architecture before shifting gear into design. His break came when he began working with Kanye West and he’s since founded his stand-alone brand, Off-White, and is currently menswear creative director at Louis Vuitton.

Presenting more than fifty-five of his works across visual arts, music, fashion, and architecture, this new exhibition offers a 360 showcase of the pivotal moments in Abloh’s career. Curated by Michael Darling with creative direction from Abloh, the pieces exhibited are a cohesive portrait of the designer’s multi-medium artistic outlook. Pieces include that incredible Inflatable Bouncy Castle featured in the Louis Vuitton menswear SS20 show at Paris’ Place Dauphine, plus the never-before-exhibited customized G-Wagon Abloh designed exclusively for Mercedes Benz. As an extension of the works in the gallery, a concept store offers a retrospective of best-selling Off-White products and exclusive new collections inspired by the exhibition.

Installation view, Virgil Abloh: “Figures of Speech”, MCA Chicago. June – September, 2019. Photo: Nathan Keay, ©MCA Chicago. Courtesy of The Gymnastics Art Institute & Virgil Abloh Art Studio and Design Practice. ©️ 2021.

Virgil Abloh, Gradient Chair, 2019. Painted metal and chrome. Private Collection. Courtesy of The Gymnastics Art Institute & Virgil Abloh Art Studio and Design Practice. ©️ 2021

Figures of Speech opens 5th November at Doha’s Fire Station as part of Qatar Creates.

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