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The Postcard Age: Selections from the Leonard A. Lauder Collection

The Postcard Age: Selections from the Leonard A. Lauder Collection

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The Postcard Age: Selections from the Leonard A. Lauder Collection

By Benjamin Weiss, Lynda Klich, and Leonard A. Lauder

"The Postcard Age," opening Wednesday at Boston's Museum of Fine Arts, features 700 examples from the era, drawn from the collection of Leonard Lauder, chairman emeritus of Estée Lauder Cos. (His collection numbers more than 160,000 in all.) The cards offer a window into the past, writes Mr. Lauder in the book that accompanies the show. But even beyond that, "postcards help remind us that history is lived and experienced by individuals."—The Wall Street Journal

In the decades around 1900, postcards were Twitter, email, Flickr, and Facebook, all wrapped into one. A postcard craze swept the world, and billions of cards were bought, mailed, and pasted into albums. Drawing on the riches of the Leonard A. Lauder Postcard Collection, probably the finest and most comprehensive collection of its type, this lavishly illustrated catalog traces how big historical and cultural themes of the modern age—enthralling, exciting, and sometimes disturbing—played out on the postcard’s tiny canvas.

The first general work on the postcard as an artistic medium since the mid-1970s, The Postcard Age is organized thematically, with chapters devoted to subjects including urban life, the changing role of women, sports, celebrity, new technologies, the stylish collectors’ cards of the art nouveau, and World War I. The result is at once a vivid picture of the cares, concerns, and pastimes of the decades around 1900 and a tempting sampler of the artistic and historical riches contained within the 100,000 cards of the Lauder Collection.

Hardcover
296 pages
Museum of Fine Arts Boston, 2012
9.8 x 8.8 inches
ISBN 9780878467815
Graphic Design, Illustration

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