Franco Albini

A rationalist architect by training, Franco Albini (Robbiate, Como, 1905 - Milan, 1977) anticipated contemporary design trends by creating aerodynamic furnishings which became milestones in the history of Italian design. Among these is the very famous 838 Veliero bookcase (made in 1938 and still produced by Cassina), which evokes the image of the tie rods of a biplane with its combination of thin steel wires that support glass tops and pierced wooden uprights. Among Albini's most successful pieces are also the Luisa armchair produced by Cassina, the Fiorenza armchair designed for Arflex, the LB10 bookcase for Poggi, with its adjustable shelves and floor-to-ceiling uprights. The innovative shapes of these furnishings are the result of careful calculations of proportions: their simplicity hides knots, complex joints, and pins, which Albini used in order to create functional furniture that can be dismantled or folded, distinguished by a sober elegance often illuminated by bold colors. Franca Helg entered Albini's studio in 1951 and signed with him every project: among the most sought-after by collectors are the rattan armchairs Margherita and Gala, designed for Bonacina in 1950.

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Franco Albini