Art theft is an ancient and complex crime. When you look at the a few of the most popular cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared 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 very 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 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 just recently moved from the Basilica of the Presumption.
The Most Famous Theft:
The most famous story of art theft involves one of the most famous paintings on the planet and among the most popular artists in history as a suspect. In the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen out of the Louver. Right after, Pablo Picasso was arrested and questioned by the police, however was launched quickly.
It took about two years till the mystery was solved by the Parisian cops. It turned out that the 30 × 21 inch painting was taken by among the museum staff members by the name of Vincenzo Peruggia, who just carried it concealed under his coat. Peruggia did not work alone. The criminal offense was thoroughly performed by a infamous con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and offer them as if they were the initial painting.
While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic creating copies for the well-known masterpiece, Mona Lisa was still hidden at Peruggias house. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the cops while attempting to offer the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy.
The Greatest Theft in the USA:
The biggest art theft in United States happened at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves using authorities uniforms broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective worth was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars took two paintings and one print by Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as 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 in addition to French art dealers are linked to the crime.
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art thieves in history. It has been stolen twice and was only recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream https://www.yelp.com/biz/kurt-criter-denver-2 was taken 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.
Three 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 offer, however the Norwegian authorities teamed up with the British Police and the Getty Museum to arrange a sting operation that restored the painting to where it belongs.
Ten years later, The Scream was taken once again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a gun and took another of Munchs painting with them. While Museum authorities waiting on the burglars to demand ransom loan, reports declared that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Eventually, the Norwegian police found the 2 paintings on August 31, 2006 but the truths 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 prepared operations that include art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most famous story of art theft involves one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most well-known artists in history as a suspect. The crime was thoroughly carried out by a well-known con male, 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.
Eventually, Peruggia was captured by the cops while attempting to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most looked for after painting by art thieves in history.