Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complicated crime. When you take a look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly planned operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out a few of the most famous cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The 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 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 recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.

The Many Famous Theft:
The most well-known story of art theft involves among the most famous paintings worldwide and among 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. Right after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the cops, however was released rapidly.

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

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic creating copies for the well-known masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. After 2 years in which Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he attempted to make the best out of his taken great. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the cops while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Greatest Theft in the U.S.A:
The greatest art theft in United States occurred at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars using cops uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective 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, 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 current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to French art dealerships are linked to the criminal activity.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is most likely the most looked for after painting by art burglars in history. It has actually been stolen two times and was just 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 poor 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 Federal government turned down the deal, however the Norwegian police teamed up with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the thieves to demand ransom loan, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Eventually, the Norwegian cops discovered the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 but the facts on how they were recovered are not understood.


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. The most popular story https://medium.com/@kurtcriter of art theft includes one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. The crime was carefully carried out by a infamous con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying 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 burglars in history.

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