Marmor Lectures in Art and Ophthalmology                                    at the American Academy of Ophthalmology


Fifth Annual Marmor Lecture

Henry Butler

"One Man's Vision"


Henry Butler, a blind New Orleans classical and jazz pianist, and  a 10-time Pinetop Perkins (formerly W. C. Handy) Best Blues Instrumentalist Award nominee.  He presented a lecture/music demonstration interesting, entertaining and pertinent to both music and ophthalmology.  Over the last 40 years, he has conducted workshops, clinics, and master classes throughout the world. Blinded by glaucoma at birth, Butler has been playing the piano since he was six years old, and arranging, composing, and performing professionally since he was twelve. Butler's  camp for blind and visually impaired teen musicians was the subject of a 2010 documentary, The Music’s Gonna Get You Through. The lecture took place during the opening general session at the Academy meeting, Sunday morning, November 12, 2017.



Fourth Annual Marmor Lecture

Francesca Casado

"The Alchemy of Color in 19th Century Art"


Francesca Casadio, PhD, the A.W. Mellon senior conservation scientist with the Art Institute of Chicago, presented the 2016 Michael F. Marmor, MD, Lecture in Ophthalmology and the Arts. Her presentation, “The Alchemy of Color in 19th Century Art,” received the highest overall rating at AAO 2016.  



Third Annual Marmor Lecture 

Edmund Morris

"Two World Visions: The Myopia of Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan"


The 2015 Michael F. Marmor, MD, Lecture in Ophthalmology and the Arts was given by Edmund Morris on the topic of Two World Visions: The Myopia of Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan. One of Ronald Reagan's most endearing mannerisms, Mr. Morris said, was that when speaking in public, he wore one contact lens to monitor his audience and took one out to keep close track of his text. The lecture detailed Roosevelt's and Reagan's discovery of their own myopic vision and how their extreme short-sightedness affected the view both had on the world. Roosevelt's epiphany about his vision came around the age of 13, when he got his first gun and could not seem to understand how his friends were shooting invisible birds, while he only saw blurs in the sky and trees. Similarly, Reagan discovered his own myopic vision around the age of 13. The sport of swimming particularly suited Reagan, Mr. Morris said, because of all sports, it is the one least dependent on clear vision.


Second Annual Marmor Lecture

Mark Foster Gage

"Architecture, Ophthalmology, and the Seeing of Space"

Architect Mark Foster Gage presented the 2014 second annual Marmor Lecture: “Architecture, Ophthalmology and the Seeing of Space.”  Mr. Gage is a pioneer in the fields of architecture and design and is assistant dean and professor at the Yale University School of Architecture. His work has been exhibited in venues such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and the Art Institute of Chicago, and featured in the popular media, including Vogue, Wired, and The New York Times, and on PBS.


Inaugural Marmor Lecture

Richard Kendall

"Degas, New Orleans, and Eyes Greatly in Need of Care"

The first Michael F. Marmor M.D. Lecture was given on Sunday, November 17, 2013, during the American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting in New Orleans. The presenter was the well known art historian and Degas expert, Richard Kendall, the Curator-at-Large at the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, MA. The subject was “Degas, New Orleans, and Eyes Greatly in Need of Care”.


The goal of the Marmor Lecture is to provide an interdisciplinary--and entertaining-- look at the intersection between culture, history, and medicine, and to examine the relevance of history and the arts to the practice of ophthalmology.  This lecture at the American Academy of Ophthalmology annual meeting is sponsored by the generosity of  Michael F. Marmor, M.D.



Page updated September 6, 2018