Linear, elegant, and visually light… like all of Franco Albini’s designs, each component of the designer’s Infinito shelving bookcase storage system becomes an aspect within a larger composition that visually explores equilibrium. With a mere five components – shelves in two depths, cabinets in two heights, a single tensioned strut – Albini has provided the “tools” with which to design a plethora of storage systems.
The struts are adjustable in height and are tensioned between ceiling and floor with disc pads. Each strut section features Albini’s characteristic tapering – the visual aspects of each strut becoming thinner as the tensioning components are revealed near the ceiling and floor. Each Infinito shelving strut is vertically bifurcated creating a slit that allows light and space to pass through the form – each side of the strut has a series of holes through which shelves and cabinets can be affixed at varying heights. Shelves are available in two depths – each features exquisite detailing that includes a shallow perimeter wall; the sides of which are articulated as a cant at the shelf’s open front. Cabinets are also available in two heights – the shorter has a closed face expanse that functions as a drop-down door; the taller has a face divided into two doors that open outward from the center. The vertical slits and perforations along with the inherent horizontal openings around shelves and cabinets, ensure a profound levity to any resulting Infinito shelving composition. While the shelving can certainly be placed near a wall, it was designed to be freestanding making it also ideal as a room or space divider.
While Cassina makes all of the Infinito shelving components available separately to allow the system to be personally customized, the manufacturer also offers several popular single, double, and triple configurations – each includes a number of shelves of varying depths and cabinets of varying heights. The system is available in three finishes – ash wood in natural or black-stained as well as American walnut.
Born in Milan in 1905, Franco Albini's work spans across furniture design, product design, architecture, urban planning and interior design. His work was an integration of modern design and Italian craftsmanship. Through his product and furniture design, Albini celebrated the raw form of materials and transparent construction. Albini would forgo ornament and encasement of furniture, to allow the structure to be revealed. In 1939, he debuted a radio fully encased in glass to expose the inner workings. His most well-known work is the Albini Desk in 1949 for Knoll, which is still in production today. As a designer, he has collaborated with Gio Ponti, Franca Helg, as well as Helg and Bob Noorda.