Leonard Lauder was first drawn to postcards as a boarding school student in Miami Beach. Lauder,  the 85-year-old chairman emeritus of the Estée Lauder Companies, especially loved the ones that area Art Deco hotels doled out for free, with images of sand extending uninterrupted for miles.

In reality, “it wasn’t really on a wide-open beach. There were hotels on either side,” Lauder told artnet News in a recent interview. “But there you were with the hotel sitting on the empty beach, with the sea in the background and sand all around. It was sort of a fantasy for me.” The color palettes also moved him. “I don’t like the many shades of gray,” he said. “I like colors.”

Lauder’s boarding school friends also collected the freebies, but only for a couple of years. Lauder, however, stuck to collecting. Before long, he was buying 100-year-old postcards from a stamp dealership Read more