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 popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out a few 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 attacked 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 just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings in the world and among the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken out of the Louver. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was jailed and questioned by the authorities, but was launched rapidly.

It took about two years until the secret was resolved 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 brought it hidden under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was carefully performed by a well-known con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

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

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

As of yet, none of the paintings have been found and the https://foursquare.com/v/kurt-criter/59ae10555161136b77113e4f case is still unsolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealers are linked to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most searched for painting by art thieves in history. It has been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the poor security.

Three months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government rejected the offer, but the Norwegian police teamed up with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the thieves to demand ransom money, reports claimed that both paintings were burned to hide evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the facts on how they were recuperated are not known.


When you look at the some of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly prepared operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most popular story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully performed by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most looked for after painting by art thieves in history.

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