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



Art theft is an complex and ancient crime. When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out a few of the most well-known 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 carried 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 just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft includes one of the most popular 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 taken from the Louver. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was arrested and questioned by the authorities, but was released rapidly.

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 carried it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was carefully carried out by a notorious con guy, 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 busy developing copies for the popular masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias home. Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Biggest Theft in the U.S.A:
The greatest 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 burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, in addition to a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. According to recent reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealerships are linked to the criminal activity.

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

3 months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government refused the deal, but the Norwegian cops worked together with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that revived 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 hide evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts 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 completely planned operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most well-known paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The crime was carefully conducted by a well-known con man, https://www.whitepages.com/name/Kurt-Criter/Denver-CO Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

Eventually, 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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