According to Vogue reports, One World, an imprint of Penguin Random House, plans to publish a book late designer Virgil Abloh began writing before his passing in November 2021.
The book, titled Work in Progress, is co-authored by Abloh and Anja Aronowsky Cronberg, founder and editor-in-chief of Paris-based academic fashion publication Vestoj. (As reported by Vogue Business, Aronowsky Cronberg was working on a book about Abloh at the time of his death. Sourced from exchanges he had with Abloh, the book will be a “hybrid work that blends cultural criticism, theory, art, and personal narrative,” per One World. There is no set publication date for the book.
Aronowsky Cronberg told Vogue:
We based it on the conversations we were having: in person, over the phone, via emails, in message threads. We talked about Virgil’s process and ‘logic,’ and about ideas central to his practice: irony and earnestness, hybridity, paradox, the value of originality, and the policing of ‘good’ taste.
The project, One World said in a statement, has “the full support of [Abloh’s] wife, Shannon Abloh, access to his archives, and the participation of his most trusted creative collaborators and friends.”
Abloh told Aronowsky Cronberg in an interview Vestoj published last December:
My investigation, my work, my trajectory speaks, I hope, to a generation of young black people who need to know that there’s an open space for them to occupy too. But it’s a work in progress. I’m an autodidact, an explorer, and often I’m an amateur too.
My career in that sense is an investigative exploration. It’s about how to be a black thinker in white spaces; it’s about inserting the black canon in art history books. It’s about being a black voice that matters beyond the fringes.