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



Art theft is an complicated and ancient criminal offense. When you take a look at the a few of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly prepared operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out about some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first documented case of art theft was in 1473, when 2 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 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 Assumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves among the most famous paintings in the world and one of 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 detained and questioned by the cops, but was launched rapidly.

It took about two years until the mystery was solved by the Parisian police. 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 carried it hidden under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was carefully carried out by a notorious bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy developing copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias home. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while trying to sell the Kurt Criter painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Biggest Theft in the U.S.A:
The biggest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars wearing cops uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took 2 paintings https://www.pinterest.com/kurtcriter/ 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. Inning accordance with recent rumors, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealers are linked to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most searched for painting by art burglars in history. It has actually been stolen two times and was only recently recuperated. In 1994, throughout the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was stolen from an Oslo gallery by two burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the poor security.

Three months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government denied the offer, but the Norwegian police collaborated with the British Cops 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 burglars utilized a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials waiting on the burglars to demand ransom loan, reports claimed that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recovered 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 dealers, 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 famous artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully conducted by a well-known con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while attempting to offer 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 thieves in history.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *