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Central to the Arts and Crafts Movement, author and ceramicist William de Morgan also inherited keen mathematical skills from his father, as this exhibition demonstrates.

Better known in his time as an author of popular fiction and a contemporary of William Morris – as a man with a wild imagination and terrible business sense – William de Morgan was also one of the most inventive ceramic designers of the late Victorian period.

Showcasing magnificent ceramics from the de Morgan collection and paper designs on loan from the V&A, this exhibition re-evaluates the mathematical rigour behind de Morgan’s imaginary beasts, flora and fauna, examining the mathematical devices used in his designs.

Fascinated by the study and perfection of Middle Eastern compositions, de Morgan also reinvented lusterware – a type of pottery with a metallic glaze giving the effect of iridescence – and developed his own, innovative kilns.

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