Art Theft: The Most Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complicated criminal offense. When you take a look at the some of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely planned operations that involve art dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out some of the most well-known cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The first documented case of art theft was in 1473, when 2 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 Assumption.

The Most Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft includes one of 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. Quickly after, Pablo Picasso was detained and questioned by the authorities, however was launched quickly.

It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum workers by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely carried it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was carefully performed by a infamous con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who planned to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy developing copies for the well-known work of art, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias apartment. After two years where Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best from his taken great. Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the police while aiming to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was gone back to the Louver in 1913.

The Biggest Theft in the USA:
The biggest art theft in United States occurred at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of burglars using police uniforms burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective worth was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took https://medium.com/@kurtcriter 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 been found and the case is still unsolved. Inning accordance with current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealerships are linked to the criminal activity.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most looked for after painting by art burglars in history. It has been stolen two times and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/kurt-criter Norway, The Scream was stolen from an Oslo gallery by 2 thieves who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the poor security.

Three months later on, 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 deal, but the Norwegian police teamed up with the British Authorities and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

While Museum authorities waiting for the thieves to request ransom money, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian authorities found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 however the facts on how they were recuperated are not known.


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 popular story of art theft includes one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most https://www.whitepages.com/name/Kurt-Criter/Denver-CO popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was thoroughly conducted by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to sell the painting to an art dealer 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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