Art Theft: One Of The Most Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex crime. When you look at the some of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can read about some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first recorded case of art theft remained in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were stolen. While the triptych was being transported by ship from the Netherlands to Florence, the ship was assaulted by pirates who took it to the Gdansk cathedral in Poland. Nowadays, the piece is revealed at the National Museum in Gdansk where it was recently moved from the Basilica of the Assumption.

The Many Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft includes among the most popular paintings worldwide and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken from the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was apprehended and questioned by the authorities, however was released quickly.

It took about two years till the mystery was solved by the Parisian police. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely carried it concealed under his coat. However, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was carefully conducted by a infamous con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy creating copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment. After two years where Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best out of his stolen excellent. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while aiming to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was gone back to the Louver in 1913.

The Greatest Theft in the USA:
The greatest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves using authorities uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative worth was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, in addition to a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. According to current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealerships are connected to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most searched for painting by art burglars in history. It has been taken twice and was just recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, https://www.pinterest.com/kurtcriter/ Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 thieves who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the bad security.

Three months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government turned down the offer, however the Norwegian authorities collaborated with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was taken once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers utilized a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials waiting for the thieves to demand ransom loan, reports declared that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recuperated are not known.


When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was thoroughly carried out by a notorious con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art burglars in history.

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