The main character of a whole line of potters which
started in 1707 with Pierre MASSIER. He stood as one of the main actors of
iridescent ceramics, with metallic shimmers, also called "lustre". A
technique which probably originated in Irak in the 19th century B.C.
As young as 12 he carefully watched the work of one of his father’s employees
named GANDOLFI GAETANO, who initiated the MASSIERS in the technique of enameled
earthenware and whom he viewed as his master. He started his research on
metallic lustre around 1886-1887 and his work was rewarded by a gold medal at
the Universal Exhibition of 1889. In 1898 he presented fifteen pieces with
metallic lustre at the Salon of the Society of French Artists. Very soon he
called in famous fellow-workers among which Alexandre MUNROE (1825-1871) in
1860, OPTAT MILLET (1838-1914) in 1876 or Lucien LEVY-DHURMER (1865-1953) in
1885. Their themes were numerous and, far from a small work-shop, in 1897 his
factory employed 65 workers. Clément MASSIER’s most famous iridescent pottery
perfectly embodies the fascination and magic of fire.