Art Theft: The Many Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal offense. When you take a look at the a few of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that involve art dealers, 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 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 just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft involves among the most popular 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 out of the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the cops, however was released quickly.

It took about two years till the secret was fixed by the Parisian police. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum workers by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely carried it concealed under his coat. Nonetheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal activity was thoroughly performed by a notorious bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and sell 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 concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. After two years in which Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he aimed to make the finest out of his taken excellent. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the cops while aiming to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Biggest Theft in the U.S.A:
The biggest art theft in United States occurred at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing cops uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective worth 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, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. According to current rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealers are linked to the crime.

The https://medium.com/@kurtcriter Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most looked for after painting by art burglars in history. It has been taken two times and was just recently recovered. In 1994, during 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 bad security.

Three 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 refused the deal, but the Norwegian cops worked together with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to demand ransom cash, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to hide evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian cops found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the truths on how they were recuperated are not known.


When you look at the some of the most famous 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 well-known story of art theft includes one of the most well-known paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a notorious 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 initial painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the cops 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 burglars in history.

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