Art Theft: The A Lot Of 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 famous 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 transferred 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.

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 popular artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen out of the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was arrested and questioned by the police, however was launched quickly.

It took about two years until the secret was fixed by the Parisian authorities. It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum staff members by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just carried it hidden under his coat. Nonetheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out 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 famous work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment or condo. After 2 years in which Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the finest out of his stolen good. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the cops while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned 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 burglars using cops uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value 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.

Since 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 dealers are connected to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most demanded painting by art burglars in history. It has actually been taken two times and was just 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 stating: thanks for the poor security.

Three months later, the holders of https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLNxmDR0Lf7eKav0Z4XkSZcWl9N4D2c9qa the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government declined the offer, however the Norwegian cops teamed up with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later on, The Scream was taken again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting on the thieves to demand ransom cash, reports claimed that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the truths on how they were recuperated are not known.


When you look at the some of the most famous 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 includes one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was carefully performed by a notorious con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealership 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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