Art Theft: The Many Interesting 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 planned operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out a few of the most popular cases of art theft in the history.

The First Theft:
The very first recorded case of art theft remained in 1473, when 2 panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgment by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were taken. While the triptych was being transferred 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 famous story of art theft involves one of the most well-known paintings in the world and among the most famous 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 apprehended and questioned by the cops, but was launched 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 merely brought it hidden under his coat. The criminal offense was thoroughly conducted by a infamous 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 original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy developing copies for the famous work of art, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. After two years in which Peruggia did not hear from Chaudron, he attempted to make the very best out of his taken excellent. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the police while aiming to offer the painting to an art dealer 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 happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing police uniforms got into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, https://www.spokeo.com/Kurt-Criter and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, along with a French and a Chinese artifact.

As of yet, none of the paintings have been found and the case is still unsolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealers are connected to the criminal activity.

The Scream:
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art thieves in history. It has actually been taken two times and was only recently recuperated. In 1994, throughout the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken 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, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Federal government refused the deal, but the Norwegian authorities teamed up with the British Police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that revived the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later on, The Scream was taken again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting on the burglars to demand ransom money, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 however the truths on how they were recuperated are unknowned yet.


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 millions of dollars. The most popular story of art theft includes one of the most famous paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully performed by a notorious con guy, 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.

Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the cops 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 sought after painting by art thieves in history.

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