As son of an abstract painter, Maarten van Severen was born in Antwerp, Belgium in 1956.
In the Seventies he studied architecture at Ghent art school. Three years after he completed his studies he worked in various studios on interior design and furniture projects.
In 1986 he started to design furniture and in 1987 he founded his own studio for furniture design with limited semi-industrial production. In 1989 he produced his first wooden table; long, slim and pure in form. In 1990 he designed chairs. Chair 03 and 04 were the first to become industrial produced. His work, hand produced in his workshop, reflects his quest for perfection in form, detail and fabrication.
Maarten van Severen certainly is the most famous Belgian furniture designer and interior decorator today. With his simple, clear and well thought-out designs he achieved international fame and recognition. His designs were added to the collections of famous furniture manufacturers like Vitra and Edra. Also the interiors he created were much discussed.
The famous Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas entrusted the interiors of several projects such as the Maison à Floirac in Bordeaux (1996), and the Villa dall'Ava (1990).
Many objects designed by Maarten van Severen have been showcased in exhibitions throughout Europe.
In 2005 he died at the age of 48 due to cancer.