Art Theft: The Many Intriguing and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complicated criminal offense. When you look at the a few 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. Here you can read about some of the most famous cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The first documented case of art theft was in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were stolen. 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.

The The Majority Of Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft includes among the most famous paintings on the planet and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken out of the Louver. Soon after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the police, however was released quickly.

It took about two years until the mystery was solved by the Parisian cops. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum workers by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just carried it hidden under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The crime was carefully conducted by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant 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 famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment. Eventually, Peruggia was captured 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 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 broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative worth 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, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have been found and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with recent reports, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealers are connected to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art thieves in history. It has been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, throughout the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 thieves who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the bad security.

Three months later, https://www.spokeo.com/Kurt-Criter the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government refused the deal, but the Norwegian authorities teamed up with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was taken again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials awaiting the thieves to demand ransom cash, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the facts on how they were recovered are not understood.


When you look at the some of the most famous 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 involves one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The crime was carefully carried out by a infamous con male, 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.

Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most sought after painting by art thieves in history.

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