Celebrity designer Virgil Abloh has recruited Wu-Tang Clan legend GZA for his 2022 Spring-Summer Louis Vuitton Fashion Show, which included an accompanying film titled “Amen Break.” The show, which premiered earlier today (June 24) at 8:30 AM ET, also included musicians Lupe Fiasco, Saul Williams, Shabaka Hutchings, and more.
Titled “Amen Break” — after a famous drum sample that influenced hip-hop and became the foundation for electronic music genres like drum ‘n’ bass — the film features many artists in a continuation of Abloh’s ongoing celebration of Black creative talent. With this in mind, “The film reflects on a historic moment in Black art and culture when electronic music and hip hop emerged like twins from the same egg, and trickled into every part of the globe,” as told by Louis Vuitton. Some of those who appeared in the film included: Goldie, Issa Perica, Caleb Femi, Unknown T, JIM JOE, Kandis Williams, Thelma Buabeng, Octavia Burgel, Julian Eugene Tsukasa Williams, Damian Eugene Nagisa Williams, Shabaka Hutchings, Malik Le Nost, and more.
The narrative of the film, per a press release, is built on an “abstract interpretation” of the story of Lupe Fiasco, whose father organized martial arts studies on the South Side of Chicago as an alternative path for young people.
The soundtrack was curated by musical director Benji B, whose assembled collection of sounds references everything from GZA’s Liquid Swords (including the track “4th Chamber”) to Metalheadz-era drum ’n’ bass. GZA’s classic 1995 album also informed the entire show, which—like the cover art—incorporates a chess theme.
In the show notes, the designer calls for an end to ideas of male and female in hopes of nurturing a “human” approach to dressing. “Antiquated ideals like dress codes and gender fade away in favor of a universal call for peace and love,” he writes.