Art Theft: The Most Interesting and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complicated crime. When you 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 millions of dollars. Here you can check out some of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The first documented 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 revealed 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 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 taken out of the Louver. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, however was released rapidly.

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 carried it hidden under his coat. The criminal activity was carefully performed by a well-known con man, 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 hectic producing copies for the popular work of art, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias home. After two years where Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he aimed to make the best out of his stolen excellent. Ultimately, Peruggia was captured by the police while attempting to offer the painting to Kurt Criter an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was gone back to the Louver in 1913.

The Most significant Theft in the USA:
The biggest art theft in United States took location at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves using cops uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative 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.

Since yet, none of the paintings have actually been discovered and the case is still unsolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI are investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealerships are connected to the crime.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art thieves in history. It has actually been stolen twice and was only 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 saying: thanks for the poor security.

3 months later, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government refused the deal, but the Norwegian cops teamed up with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the burglars to request ransom money, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Ultimately, the Norwegian cops found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recuperated are not understood.


When you look at the some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see thoroughly 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 https://medium.com/@kurtcriter the world and one of the most well-known artists https://www.quora.com/profile/Kurt-Criter in history as a suspect. The criminal offense was thoroughly conducted by a well-known con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who planned to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the cops while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art burglars in history.

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