Art Theft: The Most Intriguing 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 completely planned operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out about some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very 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 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 recently moved from the Basilica of the Assumption.

The Many Famous Theft:
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. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken out of the Louver. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was apprehended and questioned by the cops, but was released quickly.

It took about two years till the mystery was fixed by the Parisian cops. It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely brought it concealed under his coat. Nonetheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was carefully conducted by a well-known con guy, 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 busy creating copies for the well-known work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias house. After 2 years where Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he tried to make the best out of his stolen excellent. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the police 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 USA:
The greatest art theft in United States took place at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing police uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective worth was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took 2 paintings https://www.pinterest.com/kurtcriter/ 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 actually been discovered and the case is still unsolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealerships are connected to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most sought after painting by art burglars https://www.pinterest.com/kurtcriter/ in history. It has actually been stolen twice and was only just recently recovered. In 1994, throughout the Winter 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 saying: thanks for the poor security.

Three 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 deal, however the Norwegian police collaborated with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the burglars to request ransom loan, reports declared that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian authorities discovered 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 includes one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while trying to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most looked for after painting by art burglars in history.

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