Art theft is an complex and ancient criminal activity. When you look at the a few of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, you see completely prepared operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can check out some of the most famous cases of art theft in the history.
The First Theft:
The first documented 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 assaulted 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.
One Of The Most Famous Theft:
The most popular story of art theft involves among the most famous paintings in the world and among the most popular 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 arrested and questioned by the police, but was launched rapidly.
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 just brought it concealed under his coat. The criminal offense was carefully performed by a well-known 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 original painting.
While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was hectic creating copies for the famous work of art, Mona Lisa was still concealed at Peruggias apartment or condo. Ultimately, Peruggia was caught by the police while trying to offer the painting to an art dealership from Florence, Italy.
The Biggest Theft in the USA:
The greatest art theft in United States occurred 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 cumulative worth was approximated at around 300 million dollars. The burglars 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.
As of yet, none of the paintings have actually been found and the case is still unsolved. According to current reports, the FBI are examining the possibility that the Boston Mob together with French art dealers are connected to the crime.
The painting by Edvard Munchs, The Scream, is probably the most demanded painting by art burglars in history. It has actually been taken twice and was only just recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Season Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, The Scream was taken from an Oslo gallery by two thieves who broke through an open window, triggered the alarm and left a note stating: thanks for the bad security.
Three months later on, the holders of the painting approached the Norwegian Federal government with an offer: 1 million dollars ransom for Edvard Munchs The Scream. The Government denied the offer, however the Norwegian authorities teamed up with the British Cops and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought back the painting to where it belongs.
10 years later, The Scream was taken again from the Munch Museum. This time, the burglars used a weapon and took another of Munchs painting with Kurt Criter Denver them. While Museum officials awaiting the thieves to request ransom cash, reports claimed that both paintings were burned to hide proof. Eventually, the Norwegian cops found the two paintings on August 31, 2006 but the realities 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 thoroughly planned operations that involve art dealers, art fakers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. The most well-known story of art theft includes one of the most popular paintings in the world and one of the most popular artists in history as a suspect. The criminal activity was carefully conducted by a well-known con guy, Eduardo de Valfierno, who was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as if they were the original painting.
Eventually, Peruggia was caught by the police 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.