Art Theft: The Many Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex crime. When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can read about a few of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first recorded case of art theft remained in 1473, when 2 panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were taken. 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 Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft involves among 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 from the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, however was released quickly.

It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely carried it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was thoroughly carried out by a notorious con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy developing copies for the famous work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment or condo. After 2 years in which Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the best from his taken good. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer 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 place at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves using 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, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since 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 together 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 been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the poor security.

Three months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government turned down the offer, but the Norwegian cops teamed up with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was stolen once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars utilized a gun and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom loan, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities discovered the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts 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 thoroughly prepared operations that involve https://medium.com/@kurtcriter art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft includes one of the most well-known paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was thoroughly carried out by a infamous con guy, 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.

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most sought after painting by art thieves in history.

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