Art Theft: One Of The Most Fascinating and Famous Cases in History



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal activity. 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 dealerships, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and countless dollars. Here you can check out a few of the most popular 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 taken. 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 Presumption.

The A Lot Of Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft includes among the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was taken from the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was jailed and questioned by the cops, however was launched rapidly.

It took about two years till 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 merely brought it concealed under his coat. Nonetheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The crime was carefully conducted by a notorious con male, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent out by an art faker who meant to make copies and sell them as if they were the initial 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. Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the police while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.

The Greatest Theft in the U.S.A:
The greatest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing police uniforms burglarized the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative worth was estimated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and https://medium.com/@kurtcriter works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have actually been discovered and the case is still unsolved. According to current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob in addition to 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 burglars in history. It has been stolen two times and was just recently recuperated. In 1994, throughout the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by 2 thieves who broke through an open window, set off 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 deal: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government refused the deal, however the Norwegian police worked together with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later on, The Scream was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers utilized a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum officials waiting for the burglars to request ransom money, reports declared that both paintings were burned to conceal proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian police found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the realities on how they were recovered are unknowned yet.


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

Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the authorities while trying to sell 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 thieves in history.

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