This monument marks the birthplace of noted artist Joseph Wright. Born at 28 Irongate in 1734, Wright is an internationally renowned artist, whose paintings and works on paper adorn the walls of major galleries the world over. Famed as a “painter of light” and for his association with key members of the intellectual movement known as the Enlightenment, he is now considered to be one of Britain’s most interesting and wide-ranging painters.
Wright’s contemporaries included pottery maker Josiah Wedgwood, factory owner Richard Arkwright and members of the Lunar Society, which brought together leading scientists, philosophers and industrialists of the period, such as Erasmus Darwin. Derby Museum and Art Gallery holds the most comprehensive collection of his works, including A Philosopher Giving that Lecture on an Orrery, in which a Lamp is put in the Place of the Sun, and An Alchymist.