Famous Art Heists

For those of you who follow Art News, you may have read about the Romanian prosecutors, seeking 18-year sentences for the two men who stole paintings by Picasso, Monet and Matisse, from a Dutch museum in a nighttime raid. You can read more about the trial HERE.

But they are definitely not the first to try their hand at art theft. In fact, famous paintings have been targeted for decades….

In 1911, the “MONA LISA” was stolen when a Louvre employee walked out of the museum with the painting under his clothes. He was caught in 1913.

Mona Lisa

In 1473, Hans Memling’s “Last Judgement” was stolen by Polish PIRATES. The painting is still in Poland (but is now held in a museum instead of a pirate’s private art collection).

Hans Memling LastJudge

In 1990, two men dressed as police officers strolled into Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and stole 13 piecesof art, including work by Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Manet. THE ART AND THIEVES ARE STILL AT LARGE.


So the next time you go to an art museum or see a wonderful painting inside someone’s home, remember these are rare and wonderful treasures. They have been coveted, stolen, discovered, and guarded. They are beautifully unique and should be shared and protected for our friends, neighbors and children to enjoy for years to come.


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