Maarten Van Severen studied architecture at the Art Academy in Ghent. He designed his first furniture pieces in 1986 and in the following year established an independent workshop, where he pursued the limited, semi-industrial production of his own furniture designs. The beginning of Maarten Van Severen's collaboration with Vitra in 1996 marked a new phase in his career. It offered him the opportunity to work with new materials and also brought a much wider degree of exposure and influence. Until his death in 2005 in Ghent, Maarten Van Severen developed a range of new designs for Vitra, which have progressively entered series production.