Art Theft: One Of The Most Intriguing 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 countless 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 recorded 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 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 famous story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings worldwide and one of 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 arrested and questioned by the police, but was released quickly.

It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum staff members by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just brought it hidden under his coat. The crime was thoroughly performed by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic producing copies for the famous work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias home. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while trying to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.

The Most significant Theft in the USA:
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 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 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with recent reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealerships are linked to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, https://www.whitepages.com/name/Kurt-Criter/Denver-CO is most likely the most searched for painting by art thieves in history. It has actually been taken twice and was only just recently recuperated. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was stolen from an Oslo gallery by 2 burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLNxmDR0Lf7eKav0Z4XkSZcWl9N4D2c9qa and left a note stating: thanks for the bad 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 Government turned down the offer, but the Norwegian authorities teamed up with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later, The Scream was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers utilized a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities awaiting the burglars to demand ransom cash, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian cops found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts on how they were recuperated are not understood.


When you look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that include art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was thoroughly carried out by a notorious con man, 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 authorities while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most looked for after painting by art thieves in history.

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