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



Art theft is an ancient and complicated criminal offense. When you take a look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can read about some of the most well-known cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first documented case of art theft remained in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were stolen. 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 famous story of art theft involves among the most famous paintings worldwide and one of the most popular 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 jailed and questioned by the police, but was released quickly.

It took about two years up until the secret was resolved by the Parisian cops. It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum staff members by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just carried it concealed under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal activity was thoroughly performed by a notorious bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent 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 hectic developing copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias house. After 2 years where Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best out of his taken good. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the cops while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Most significant Theft in the U.S.A:
The greatest art theft in United States took location at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group https://soundcloud.com/kurt-criter of burglars using police uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was approximated 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.

Since 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 together with French art dealerships are linked to the crime.

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 just recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by two thieves who broke through an open window, set off 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 deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government turned down the offer, but the Norwegian police worked together with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars utilized a gun and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting for the thieves to request ransom loan, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to hide evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian cops found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 but 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 planned 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 well-known paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a well-known con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who meant to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to sell 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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