Art Theft: One Of The Most Fascinating 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 thoroughly prepared operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out about a few of the most famous 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 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.

The Many Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft includes one of the most famous paintings worldwide and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken out of the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was apprehended and questioned by the cops, however was released quickly.

It turned out 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. The criminal offense was carefully performed by a infamous 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 initial painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy producing copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.

The Biggest 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 thieves wearing police uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective worth was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of 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 dealers are connected to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art burglars in history. It has been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 burglars who broke through an open window, set off the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for https://medium.com/@kurtcriter the poor security.

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

While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom cash, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian police discovered the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 but the realities on how they were recovered are not understood.


When you look at the some of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most popular story of art theft involves one of the most well-known 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 well-known con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

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

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