Louis Vuitton Men’s SS25: A United Force

Creative Director Pharrell Williams showcased a message of hope and unity during his SS25 menswear show.

There is no sound more filled with potential than that of an orchestra tuning up. These notes signal the imminent arrival of an unknown symphony.

On Tuesday night, a crowd of more than 1000 listened to a warming orchestra as anticipation rose for Pharrell’s latest menswear collection for Louis Vuitton. Guests were seated on a grassy checkerboard runway below the formidable curvature of UNESCO House. The clouds couldn’t decide whether they wanted to rain or let the sun burst through, and flags of all nations flapped in the wind. A giant globe lay at the center of the runway, putting an exclamation point on an already clear statement of unity in turbulent times. The show was called “LE MONDE EST À VOUS”: The world is yours. It was a fitting message ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics games and, before that, a historically significant parliamentary election in a fractured France.

Out walked the Voices of Fire choir and L’Orchestre du Pont Neuf with their instruments in tow. The soundtrack began with cinematic, trembling strings, dark brassy notes and plinky percussion. It all felt very Wagnerian before dropping into something wholly Pharrellian – an original composition entitled “Triumphus Cosmos.” It was so loud my eyes vibrated in their sockets.

The show began with sober, slim silhouettes, all in black. Louis Vuitton is a maison rooted in travel, and a voyager spirit permeated Pharrell’s collection from the first model, who wore a pilot-style badge pinned to his chest. This theme appeared in manners grand (giant travel trunks; aviator caps; a bomber jacket and shirt with a map of the world with Africa at its center) and small (golden planes as zipper pull tabs; “LVAIRWAYS” on silk scarves tied around necks as a steward would). Even the invitation arrived with a custom Apple AirTag, sure to be used by guests during their forthcoming summer vacations.

Another great unifying theme running through the show: Football. One model sported a uniform, team name: “LV-vers United.” Another wore football boots with cleat soles, while elsewhere a model carried a round bag with soccer-ball stitching. It was another gesture designed to connect and unify a greater global community, and perhaps a nod to the people gathering outside in bars at the same moment, watching the EU Championship.

For this collection, Pharrell collaborated with Air Afrique, a creative collective who produced a video prelude to his presentation. It featured child diplomats congregating in a UN-style meeting room.  They wore earpieces translating the words of art writer Simon Njami: “You are the future,” he told them. “The world is yours. It’s up to you to reinvent it. It’s up to you to reimagine it.”

It was a joyful spectacle, captured beautifully during the finale when the Louis Vuitton atelier joined Pharrell to take a bow.

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