Martin Margiela is a designer whose work occupies a unique position in the contemporary fashion world. The consistency of his vision has made him one of the most influential and iconoclastic designers of the last decade. Born in Limbourg, Belgium in 1959, he studied at the Royal Academy Antwerp, and was one of the first wave of talent to emerge from the city in the early 1980s (known as the 'Antwerp Six'). In 1984 he began a 3-year assistantship with Jean Paul Gaultier. He then founded his own enterprise, 'Maison Martin Margiela' in Paris in 1988 showing his first womenswear collection (Spring-Summer 1989) that year.