Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal activity. When you take a look at the a few of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very 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 attacked 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 Many Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings worldwide and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen out of the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was arrested and questioned by the police, however 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 just carried it hidden under his coat. The crime was carefully performed by a notorious con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic producing copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.

The Most significant Theft in the U.S.A:
The biggest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing cops uniforms burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took two https://www.yelp.com/biz/kurt-criter-denver-2 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 been found and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with current reports, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealerships are linked to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most searched for painting by art thieves in history. It has been taken two times and was just just recently recuperated. In 1994, during the Winter Season 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 bad security.

Three months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government denied the offer, but the Norwegian cops teamed up with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later on, The Scream was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a gun and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials awaiting the burglars to request ransom cash, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities 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 completely 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 famous paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a infamous con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the cops while trying 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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