Art Theft: The Many Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal activity. When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out some of the most well-known cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first documented case of art theft remained 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 Assumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves among the most popular paintings in the world and among the most popular 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 jailed and questioned by the authorities, however was released rapidly.

It took about two years until the secret was solved by the Parisian police. 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 brought it concealed under his coat. However, Peruggia did not work alone. The crime was carefully performed by a infamous bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out 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 hectic creating copies for the well-known work of art, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment. After 2 years where Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he attempted to make the finest out of his taken good. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Biggest Theft in the USA:
The greatest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars wearing authorities uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with current rumors, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealerships are connected to the criminal activity.

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

3 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 refused the deal, but the Norwegian cops collaborated with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a gun and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting for the burglars to demand ransom money, reports declared that both paintings were burned to hide evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities discovered the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts on how they https://soundcloud.com/kurt-criter were recovered are not understood yet.


When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most famous story of art theft involves one of the most well-known paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was thoroughly carried out by a infamous con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who meant to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

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

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