Towards the end of the 19th century, a group of craftsmen decided to break the monopoly of the great ceramic factories. Studio pottery was born, a movement that celebrated traditional artisanship and decorative flair over the monotony of the production line. Through practitioners like William De Morgan, Bernard Leach and William Staite Murray, studio pottery was soon recognised as a powerful and uniquely British contribution to the story of modern art, drawing disciples from all over Europe.
In the second half of the 20th century, female ceramicists like Lucie Rie and Alison Britton re-energised the movement. The programme ends with portraits of Grayson Perry and Edmund de Waal, two of the greatest potters working anywhere in the world today.