Although he had studied theology, soon after coming to Taize he
in contact with a potter making simple kitchenware in the
in the nearby town of Cluny. He learned the basics of the
from him, then went on to become an artist-potter working in
following the lines laid down in Bernard Leach's
The Potter's Book.
In particular, he has done much research into the role of
and their chemical equivalents in the production of stoneware
glazes. He was 90 in 2011, continues to create and is widely
recognized as one of the leading masters in traditional
stoneware glazes. His most recent exhibitions include one held
in 2009 and another held
in 2011 at La Compagnie de la Chine et des Indes in Paris.
A Secret Shared is a collection of texts and poems. It was
fist published in France in 1990 with the title
Secret Partage. It went out of print and was
republished in 1999 by La
Revue de la Ceramique et du Verre in a revised
edition, under the title Le Jardin du Potier (the
potter's garden). This was replaced in 2009 by a new edition, Pierres
Habitees (inhabited stones) to coincide with the Paris
exhibition with the same title. The cover of the current edition
is shown above. The book is superbly illustrated,
including a large number of full-page
of pots with the extraordinary glazes Brother Daniel has
as a result of his research.
Part One. Palissy's Secret
Part Two. All for an oil spot!
Part Three. The Gousseau glaze
Part Four. Creation: Victory over
Each of the four sections ends with a series of simple poems inspired by the seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter.
The Practice of Stoneware Glazes: minerals, rocks, ashes. By Daniel de Montmollin. Paris: La Revue de la Ceramique et du Verre. 2005. A translation by Brother Anthony of his Pratique des émaux 1300°C - Minéraux, roches, cendres, a technical, practical guide for potters wishing to develop their glazes by informed experimentation, whether or not they use vegetable ashes.