Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an complicated and ancient criminal activity. When you take a look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out some of the most famous 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 transferred 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 Assumption.

One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft includes among the most popular paintings on the planet and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louver. Soon after, Pablo Picasso was apprehended and questioned by the cops, but was released quickly.

It took about 2 years until the secret was fixed by the Parisian authorities. 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 concealed under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The crime was carefully carried out by a notorious bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy creating copies for the famous masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias home. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.

The Greatest 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 using police uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, in addition to a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have been found and the case is still unsolved. According to current rumors, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealers are linked to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most searched for painting by art thieves in history. It has been taken twice and was just recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was stolen from an Oslo gallery by 2 burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the bad security.

3 months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The https://www.quora.com/profile/Kurt-Criter Federal government turned down the offer, however the Norwegian police worked together with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to organize a sting https://www.whitepages.com/name/Kurt-Criter operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

10 years later, The Scream was taken once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting for the burglars to demand ransom loan, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian cops discovered the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the truths on how they were recuperated Kurt Criter Denver are unknowned yet.


When you look at the some of the most well-known 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 popular 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 crime was thoroughly performed by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops while trying 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.

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