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



Art theft is an ancient and complicated criminal activity. When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can read about a few of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first recorded case of art theft was in 1473, when two 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 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 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 on the planet and among the most famous artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken from the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, but was launched quickly.

It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely brought it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was carefully conducted by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy creating copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.

The Most significant Theft in the U.S.A:
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 police uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative 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, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have actually been discovered and the case is still unsolved. Inning https://soundcloud.com/kurt-criter accordance with current rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealers are connected to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art burglars in history. It has been taken twice and was only just recently recuperated. In 1994, throughout the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken 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.

3 months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government denied the deal, but the Norwegian police collaborated with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom loan, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recovered are not known.


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 dealers, 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 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 meant to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

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

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