Born to Russian Jewish parents in Moldova in 1930, Maria Pergay fled to Paris with her mother during World War II. Following her studies in costume, set design, and sculpture at the Institut des Hautes Études Cinématographiques, she built her career as a shop window designer through the 1950s, eventually receiving commissions from major brands like Dior and Hermès. In 1960, she opened an atelier in the Marais district of Paris, selling her own creations, primarily silverwork, directly to the public.
As Pergay began to explore furniture making in the late 1960s, she also became drawn to stainless steel, the material that is now most associated with her work. By the 1970s, she was attracting international clients, including Salvador Dalí, Pierre Cardin, and Saudi Prince Abdullah, and in the ’80s and ’90s, received several important commissions in Russia. Today she continues to design interiors and produce limited-edition works, almost always incorporating her beloved stainless steel.