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



Art theft is an complex and ancient crime. When you take a look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out about some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The first recorded case of art theft remained in 1473, when 2 panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were taken. 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 shown 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 includes among the most popular paintings worldwide and among the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen out of the Louver. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, but was released quickly.

It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum workers by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely brought it concealed under his coat. The criminal activity was thoroughly performed by a well-known con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who planned to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic producing copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment. After two years where Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he aimed to make the best from his taken good. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while trying to sell the painting https://www.pinterest.com/kurtcriter/ to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Biggest Theft in the U.S.A:
The most significant art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars using cops uniforms burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have been discovered and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with recent reports, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealers are linked to the criminal activity.

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

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

10 years later, The Scream was stolen once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom cash, reports declared that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Eventually, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the realities on how they were recovered are not understood yet.


When you look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly prepared operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most famous story of art theft includes one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The crime was carefully performed by a infamous 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 initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while trying to offer 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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