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Franco Albini

Italian, 1905-1977

While working under the polymath Gio Ponti — arguably the most important figure in 20th-century Italian modernism — furniture designer Franco Albini nurtured a love for modern forms combined with traditional craft techniques.

Albini is widely known for working with organic materials such as rattan and cane for his chairs and other seating, but he also played a pivotal role in the Italian rationalist movement of the early 20th century, which saw architects and furniture makers applying a strict emphasis on geometry in their work. Rationalists drew on Ancient Roman architecture but rejected ornament, much in the way that Le Corbusier and celebrated Bauhaus figures such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe had in their modernist furniture.

Albini received his degree in architecture from the Polytechnic University of Milan in 1929, and, in 1931, he founded his practice in Milan, where he tackled workers’ housing and other reconstruction projects. A gifted urban planner, he also developed the Palazzo Bianco, Palazzo Rosso and Tesoro di San Lorenzo museums in Genoa. While Albini is revered for his Margherita chair — a Triennale Milano award winner created for Bonacina in 1951 — he also collaborated with manufacturers Poggi and Cassina in the 1940s on seating, tables and more that embodied his artistic vision. Of that mid-century work, the one piece that perhaps best captures this vision is the iconic Luisa chair.

With its cherry red upholstery and sinuous wooden legs that seem to float aboveground, the Luisa is a genuine masterpiece. It is also a testament to Albini’s perfectionism, as it endured several prototypes — including one made by Knoll in the late 1940s — and took approximately 15 years to design. Poggi launched the final version of the armchair in 1955, earning Albini the prestigious Compasso d’Oro from Italy’s Association for Industrial Design. It is produced today by Cassina. Albini named the chair for someone who likely saw the process firsthand: his personal secretary of two decades, Luisa Colombini.

Find vintage Franco Albini furniture on 1stDibs.

Average Sold Price
$2,651
Styles
Materials
Iconic Designs from Franco Albini
Explore timeless pieces that have earned their place in history.
Luisa Chair
Luisa Chair
Franco Albini Margherita
Franco Albini Margherita
Franco Albini Fiorenza Chair
Franco Albini Fiorenza Chair
Franco Albini Lb7
Franco Albini Lb7
Franco Albini, Set of 4 Luisella Chairs for Poggi, Italy, Rosewood Frames
By Franco Albini
Located in Wargrave, Berkshire
Franco Albini for Poggi, Italy. Circa 1955, a set of 4 " Luisella " chairs. The more often seen Luisa chair was named after Albini's wife, this much rarer design is named after his d...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Wood

Franco Albini Writing Desk Knoll International, 1949
By Franco Albini, Knoll
Located in Roosendaal, Noord Brabant
Rare and early writing desk model 1928 designed by Franco Albini and manufactured by Knoll International. This desk was designed in 1949 and produced for many years by Knoll internat...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Metal

  • Franco Albini Writing Desk Knoll International, 1949
  • Franco Albini Writing Desk Knoll International, 1949
  • Franco Albini Writing Desk Knoll International, 1949
  • Franco Albini Writing Desk Knoll International, 1949
H 26.38 in. W 48.04 in. D 27.56 in.
Modernist Pendant Chandelier by Franco Albini in Glass and Chrome, Italy 1960's
By Franco Albini
Located in New York, NY
Franco Albini (1905–1977) Minimalist, early model adjustable-height pendant by Franco Albini, with a movable chrome-plated swing-arm and a sleek, dimpled opaline glass shade. Height...
Category

1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Chrome

Franco Albini LB7 Modular Bookcase in Solid Teak Wood Poggi, 1950s
By Poggi, Franco Albini
Located in Montecatini Terme, IT
LB7 modular bookcase composed of a single module with shelves and a storage cabinet with two doors, made in veneered solid teak wood, and black lacquered metal details. Designed ...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Metal

Franco Albini 1960 Rattan Cane & Bamboo Rocking Horse, Animal Sculpture Italy
By Franco Albini
Located in Miami, FL
Original Franco Albini Mid-Century Modern Rattan and Bamboo Rocking Horse, Animal Sculpture. Rattan and bamboo rocking horse core with basket weave seat. This horse brings joy to ...
Category

1960s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Bamboo, Cane, Rattan

Mid-Century Modern Vintage Rattan Pouf Stool Franco Albini attr Italy, 1950s
By Franco Albini
Located in Vienna, AT
A mid century modern vintage rattan pouf or stool, which was designed attributed to Franco Albini. Italy 1950s. The rattan pouf is very stable, although it looks like lightweight. F...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Rattan

Franco Albini Minimalist Desk for Knoll International, 1950s
By Franco Albini
Located in Brussels, BE
Franco Albini Minimalist desk for Knoll International, 1950s Mid-Century Modern European desk. Franco Albini was an Italian architect and designer. He was a very important figure ...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Metal

Pair of Iconic Margherita Wicker Armchairs by Franco Albini for Bonacina
By Bonacina, Franco Albini
Located in Carpaneto Piacentino, Italy
Beautiful couple of Iconic Franco Albini armchairs model "Margherita" 1951, manufactured by Bonacina. Margherita is considered the first "legless" armchair of Italian design. The p...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Franco Albini

Materials

Wicker

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Franco Albini Sellers

More Franco Albini Designs
Luisa Chair
Luisa Chair
Average Price
$7,842
Number Available
7
Luisa Chair
By Franco Albini
Materials
Wood, Fabric
Styles
Mid Century Modern
After working for approximately 15 years through several prototypes of the design (one of which was manufactured by Knoll in the late 1940s), the Italian designer, architect and urban planner Franco Albini (1905–77) finished what is considered to be a masterpiece: the Luisa chair. The dignified armchair is upholstered in warm red fabric and named after Luisa Colombini, Albini’s personal assistant and secretary of two decades. Lightweight and initially available in teak, mahogany and beech, th...
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Franco Albini Margherita
Franco Albini Margherita
Average Price
$3,906
Number Available
7
Franco Albini Margherita
By Franco Albini
Materials
Natural Fiber, Rattan, Fabric, Wicker
Styles
Mid Century Modern
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Franco Albini Fiorenza Chair
Franco Albini Fiorenza Chair
Average Price
$12,500
Number Available
5
Franco Albini Fiorenza Chair
By Franco Albini
Materials
Fabric, Wood, Upholstery
Styles
Mid Century Modern
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Franco Albini Lb7
Franco Albini Lb7
Average Price
$15,307
Number Available
4
Franco Albini Lb7
By Franco Albini
Materials
Wood, Metal
Styles
Mid Century Modern
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Franco Albini furniture for sale on 1stDibs

Furniture by Franco Albini are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. In our collection of Franco Albini furniture there are many options to choose from, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. 99 vintage editions of these items are in stock, while there are 34 modern editions to choose from as well. Many of the original furniture by Franco Albini were created in Europe during the 20th century in the Mid-Century Modern style. Many customers also consider furniture by Carlo De Carli, Marco Zanuso and Tobia Scarpa if you are looking for additional options. The prices for Franco Albini furniture can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. The price for these items starts at $NaN on 1stDibs and tops at $NaN, while pieces like these can sell for $NaN on average.

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