Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



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

The First Theft:
The first documented 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 assaulted 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 recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

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

It took about 2 years till the mystery was solved by the Parisian cops. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely brought it hidden under his coat. Nonetheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal activity was thoroughly performed by a infamous con male, 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.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy producing copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Most significant Theft in the U.S.A:
The greatest art theft in United States took place at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves using cops uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value was estimated 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 case is still unsolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealerships are linked to the criminal activity.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most sought after painting by art thieves in history. It has actually been taken twice and was only just recently recuperated. In 1994, throughout the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was stolen from an http://kurtcriter.brandyourself.com/Links Oslo gallery by two burglars who broke through an open window, set off the alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the poor security.

3 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 declined the offer, however the Norwegian police collaborated with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later, The Scream was taken once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials awaiting the thieves to request 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 recovered are not known yet.


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

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most looked for after painting by art thieves in history.

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