Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an complex and ancient criminal offense. When you take a look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out about some of the most well-known cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The first documented case of art theft was 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 assaulted 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 just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft includes among the most popular 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 stolen out of the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, but was launched 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 thoroughly carried out by a well-known con man, 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 hectic creating copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. After 2 years in which Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best from his stolen great. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Greatest Theft in the U.S.A:
The most significant art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars wearing cops uniforms broke 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, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have been discovered and the case is still unsolved. According to current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealerships are connected to the crime.

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

Three months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government rejected the deal, but the Norwegian authorities collaborated with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later on, The Scream was taken once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a weapon and https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/kurt-criter took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities awaiting the burglars to request ransom money, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian cops discovered the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recuperated are unknowned yet.


When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully carried out by a notorious 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.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the police while trying 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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