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



Art theft is an ancient and complex criminal offense. When you look at the some of the most well-known cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that include 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 recorded case of art theft was in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were taken. While the triptych was being carried 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 Most Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft includes one of the most popular paintings on the planet and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louver. Not long after, Pablo Picasso was jailed and questioned by the authorities, however was launched quickly.

It took about 2 years until the secret was resolved by the Parisian authorities. It ended up that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by one of the museum employees by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who merely brought it concealed under his coat. Nevertheless, Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal activity was thoroughly carried out by a notorious bilker, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy producing copies for the popular masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias home. After two years where Peruggia did not speak with Chaudron, he attempted to make the best out of his stolen great. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the Louver in 1913.

The Most significant 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 wearing authorities uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose cumulative value was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The thieves took 2 paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

Since yet, none of the paintings have 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 linked to the criminal offense.

The Scream:
The painting https://www.spokeo.com/Kurt-Criter by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art thieves in history. It has been stolen twice and was just just recently recuperated. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by two burglars who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the poor security.

3 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 refused the deal, however the Norwegian authorities worked together with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored 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 money, rumors declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Ultimately, the Norwegian cops discovered the two paintings on August 31, 2006 however the truths on how they were recovered 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 involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most popular story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a notorious 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.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the authorities while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealership 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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