An ode to the undying legacy of Virgil Abloh, LORENZ.OG shines the spotlight on his "PATENTED COLORSCHEMES" Off-White x Nike Air Force 1 "SOLIS."
Although we're months away from the first anniversary of Virgil's passing, it remains a truth that's difficult to accept. Through multiple mediums; fashion, automotive, music, art, and more, Abloh left his mark on the global stage, kicking down doors for young creatives of all backgrounds to find their footing in the industry. His work and his impact are nothing short of legendary, and through them, he lives on.
It feels like creatives of all ages, across all continents, have personal anecdotes to share about their experiences with Virgil. These stories are what separated him from most, reflective of his opposition to gatekeeping – if there was a door he could open, he would; if there was a conversation to be had, he'd have it.
One such creative that's found his work positively impacted by Virgil's open approach to collaboration and resource sharing is LORENZ.OG.
In case you've missed out on his work, designer Lorenzo Federici has made a name for himself in sneaker circles across the globe thanks to his "PATENTED COLORSCHEMES" samples.
Characterized by immensely detailed dye work, his work has found itself on the feet of Jorja Smith and Lil Yatchy, across silhouettes such as the Stüssy Air Force 1 Mid, CDG Air Max 95, and Supreme Air Force 1 Low.
Several of these unmissable gradient works have been a decorative force on several of Virgil's Off-White x Nike styles, including the AJ4, AF1, and AJ5. Naturally, these striking reinterpretations of his works caught the eye of the late Louis Vuitton Menswear frontman, resulting in a collaborative journey that continues to unfold before us.
From here, the relationship quickly developed, "From the jump, he was so open, honest and enthusiastic in giving his time, energy and opinion," leading Virgil to purchase a pair of 95s for himself.
This was the spark that led to the creation of the Off-White x Nike Air Force 1 "SOLIS," which was conceived to be gifted to Virgil – unfortunately, he passed before this dream was realized.
The design, of which only two exist, is unmistakable of the LORENZ.OG arsenal, thanks to its sunburst colorway, rich in yellow and orange hues, beautifully contrasting the Off-White AF1s statement metallic Swoosh.
More than just shoes, the project exemplifies the impact that Virgil had on those that he engaged with and inspired. On this, Lorenzo shared with Highsnobiety: "Conversations with Virgil immediately impacted my decision making and opened my eyes for a broader direction rather than staying in one lane.
At the time, I was offered my first collaboration with a huge footwear brand, and I'd accepted the project. However, I wasn't absolutely in love with the shoe. Knowing Virgil was now behind me gave me the confidence to walk away even though it felt like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I'd have always regretted my first collab being a shoe that I didn't absolutely love, and I can thank Virgil for that and the advice he gave me."
He continued: "He'd just suggest something so crazy that I'd never even think of, which opened my mind to his way of thinking. He wanted to collaborate on a handbag and heels, which at the time I'd never even thought about but it made so much sense."
Fortunately, Lorenzo had the opportunity to learn from the multi-hyphenate in a multitude of ways before his passing, seeing the unreleased Off-White Burrow Bag, finished with the "PATENTED COLORSCHEMES" finesse come to life.
Although the full breadth of their collaboration couldn't be realized in the short time they shared, the projects that have found the light have highlighted their huge potential; shedding some clarity on the sheer number of projects Virgil was working on in the background, for which we celebrate him all the more.