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Terenja van Dijk



Works, Maarten van Severen

Retrospective on the work of designer Maarten Van Severen

Commissioned by the Design Museum Ghent

Direction documentary film

In what would be the last year of his life Maarten Van Severen worked on a retrospective, commisioned by the Design Museum Ghent, which showed furniture, prototypes, drawings, notes, photographs and more.

A film explores his ideas and motives and is projected onto a large screen in a separate seating area of the museum.
Locations: Design Museum Gent, dec. 2004 - febr. 2005; Storefront Gallery New York, mei-juni 2005; MARTa Herford, sept. - oct. 2005; Dutch Design Center Utrecht, oct. 2005 - jan. 2006.


The work of Maarten Van Severen exudes simplicity and has a powerful aura. This is furniture that is not only aesthetic, but also comfortable to sit in, lie on, and use.

His goal is that a piece of furniture has to look ‘as if it has always been there.’ In addition to furniture, he also collaborates with architects like Rem Koolhaas and Xaveer De Geyther to make light-hearted interiors. Maarten Van Severen is an important designer internationally. His designs are produced by important manufacturers like Edra, Vitra, Bulo, and others, and are sold worldwide.


The basis for the film is an encounter with Van Severen in his studio, which reveals the way he thinks, lives, collects, designs, and makes. A number of outings to the Van Abbemuseum in the Netherlands, the Vitra furniture manufacturers in Basel, and the renovation and expansion of the home/atelier of Boxy’s caterers illustrate the strength of his work. From this it is evident just what kind of positive, intense relationship he established with his patrons.

At the right, a montage of two fragments from the film in which Maarten Van Severen shows his interventions in the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven.

  • Terenja van Dijk
  • Moniek Bucquoye
  • Jess De Gruyter
  • Sammy Goemaere
  • Terenja van Dijk and Jess De Gruyter
  • Anna Luyten
  • Peter Vermeersch