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



Art theft is an complicated and ancient crime. When you take a look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly prepared operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out 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 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 revealed at the National Museum in Gdansk where it was recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft includes among the most famous 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 apprehended and questioned by the cops, but was released rapidly.

It took about 2 years until the mystery was fixed by the Parisian cops. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum workers by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just brought it concealed under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was thoroughly conducted by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial 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 two years where Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best out of his stolen good. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was gone back to the Louver in 1913.

The Greatest Theft in the U.S.A:
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 thieves using authorities uniforms broke 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, in addition to a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have been discovered and the case is still unsolved. https://www.yelp.com/biz/kurt-criter-denver-2 According to recent reports, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealers are linked to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art burglars in history. It has actually been stolen two times and was 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 saying: thanks for the bad security.

Three months later on, 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 deal, however the Norwegian cops collaborated with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom loan, reports declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts on how they were recovered are not known.


When you look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most famous story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully carried out by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art burglars in history.

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