November 18, 2005

Art Heists

This is pretty random, but this window has been open on my computer for three days now and it may as well get posted. The FBI just updated its list of the top ten art crimes. Not top ten of 2005, it looks like, but top ten ever. So here they are:
  • 7,000-10,000 looted and stolen Iraqi artifacts, 2003
  • 12 paintings from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum theft, 1990
  • 2 Renoirs and 1 Rembrandt stolen from Sweden's National Museum, 2000 (Recovered)
  • Munch's The Scream and The Madonna from the Munch Museum in Oslo, 2004
  • Benevenuto Cellini Salt Cellar from Vienna's Kunsthistorisches Museum, 2003
  • Caravaggio's Nativity with San Lorenzo and San Francesco from Palermo, 1969 [pictured]
  • Davidoff-Morini Stradivarius violin from a New York apartment, 1995
  • Two Van Gogh paintings from Amsterdam's Vincent Van Gogh Museum, 2002
  • Cezanne's View of Auvers-sur-Oise from Oxford's Ashmolean Museum, 1999
  • Da Vinci's Madonna of the Yarnwinder from Scotland's Drumlanrig Castle, 2003
  • So if anyone has any information... Also, it's odd that the Caravaggio got stolen way back in 1969, but the other crimes have all taken place in the past 5-10 years. Were people not stealing masterpieces back in the 1970s and 80s? Have all those pieces been found? Have thieves only very recently figured out how to take the really valuable stuff? Reading the individual reports, it seems like all you really need to do is walk into a museum with a mask and a gun and take what you want.
    -- Brad Plumer 6:47 PM || ||