By Hannah Militano

Pharrell Joins Louis Vuitton As Men’s Artistic Director

He follows in the footsteps of the late designer Virgil Abloh
Pharrell Williams. Photo: Erik Ian / Courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton has just announced that Pharrell Williams will take over the role as creative director of menswear, a position the late designer Virgil Abloh held at the time of his death.

“Louis Vuitton is delighted to welcome Pharrell Williams as its new Men’s Creative Director,” the French fashion house confirmed in a statement. Williams’s debut collection will take place next June during Men’s Fashion Week in Paris.

“Pharrell Williams is a visionary whose creative universes expand from music to art, and to fashion—establishing himself as a cultural global icon over the past twenty years,” said the brand. “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.”

An acclaimed record producer, musician, entrepreneur and overall fashion icon, this is hardly Williams’ first rodeo in a design role. The Happy singer announced a collaboration with Tiffany & Co. last January (which is also owned by Louis Vuitton parent company LVMH).

He co-owns streetwear brand Human Made alongside Kenzo creative director Nigo and is founder of streetwear labels Billionaire Boys Club and Ice Cream. A noted friend of Chanel, Williams was known as a muse to the late Karl Lagerfeld. He became Chanel’s first male fashion ambassador in 2017 and even designed a collection for the Parisian maison in 2019.

The musician ventured into skincare with the launch of his line Humanrace in 2020. Williams is also set to reveal new designs at Moncler’s Genius activation during London Fashion Week next week.

He collaborated with Louis Vuitton on various occasions in the past, including working with then-creative director Marc Jacobs on a line of sunglasses in 2007 which were later re-issued by Abloh in 2018.

“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 Louis Vuitton Chairman and CEO, Pietro Beccari. “His creative vision beyond fashion will undoubtedly lead Louis Vuitton towards a new and very exciting chapter.”

Since Abloh’s untimely death in November 2021, his position at the luxury fashion house has remained vacant. A close friend of the late designer, Williams will be the first permanent fixture as head of menswear since Abloh’s passing.

For Louis Vuitton’s latest menswear collection, the house tapped KidSuper founder Colm Dillane as its guest creative director for fall/winter 2023, presented during Paris Fashion Week.

This article originally appeared on GRAZIA USA.