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



Art theft is an ancient and complex 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 check out 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 taken. 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 recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

The Many Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft involves one of the most well-known paintings worldwide and among the most famous 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 arrested 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 simply brought it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was carefully performed 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.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy developing copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment or condo. Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while trying to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Biggest Theft in the USA:
The most significant art theft in United States took location at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars wearing authorities uniforms burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took two 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 discovered and the case is still unsolved. According to current rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealerships are linked to the criminal activity.

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

3 months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government denied the offer, however the Norwegian cops worked together with the British Authorities and the https://myspace.com/kurtcriter Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the burglars to demand ransom cash, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to hide evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian authorities found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the facts on how they were recuperated are not known.


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 popular 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 criminal offense was thoroughly conducted by a infamous con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who planned to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, 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 most likely the most looked for after painting by art burglars in history.

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