The cultural heritage of mankind is the greatest works, on which the best masters worked. Someone put his soul into the pictures, and someone created the ideal curves in the form of sculptures. Today the best works of art are kept under protection in museums, and their value at auctions reaches tens of millions of dollars.
But sometimes there is a temptation to steal a masterpiece. Not always attackers demand for it the ransom or sell to private collectors. It happens that the creation of geniuses simply disappear. They are hunted by the police, collectors, hunters after the awards, but they can not find them. Here is a list of the most famous stolen works of art, which are still lost. The Stradivarius Violin from Davidoff-Morini.
Having a Stradivarius violin for a musician is like having a holy Grail. It is believed that this instrument has a quality and rich sound. Stradivari created a tool that, even through centuries of use, has not lost its unique qualities. You just need to take care of these unique violins carefully. It is believed that to this day only about 650 original musical instruments from the medieval master have survived. By the way, these are not only violins, but also violas, cellos, harps, guitars and mandolins. To have at their disposal the creation of Stradivari consider all museums as an honor. There are his works not only in private collections, but in the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian Institution, the Stradivari Museum in Italian Cremona. And in October 1995, the unique creation of the master, dated 1727, was stolen from the apartment of the violinist Erika Morini in New York. The approximate cost of the rarity was three million dollars. The mistress herself died shortly after the robbery, unable to survive the bitterness of loss. True, she was already 91 at the time. And that theft is still on the list of the FBI’s top ten crimes related to art. A unique violin is so lost and no one knows where it is now.
Picture of Von Gogh “View of the sea at Scheveningen”.
On December 7 at about 8 am a pair of unknown robbers climbed onto the roof of the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. From there thieves could get inside the room. Attackers from all the variety of paintings took only two: “View of the sea at Scheveningen” and “The flock comes out of the reformist church in Newen.” Both works of Van Gogh wrote between 1882 and 1884. It is believed that at this time the artist created his best masterpieces. And the total cost of paintings is about 30 million dollars. The official website of the museum says that Van Gogh wrote this picture, while at the beach resort of Scheveningen, near the Hague. The poor artist had to literally fight the weather – there was a strong gusty wind that raised the sand into the air and made them stick to the paint. And although Van Gogh cleaned the paint of sand, its remains can be found in some layers on the canvas. In 2004, two people were arrested on charges of theft. They were sentenced to 4.5 years in prison, but the pictures were never found. The museum announced a reward of 100 thousand euros to those who give some information about the whereabouts of art objects.
Pablo Picasso’s painting “Pigeon with green peas”.
This theft was rather strange. There was an incident on May 20, 2010 in Paris, at about 7 am. From the local Museum of Modern Art five paintings worth a total of 100 million euros were stolen. One of them was Picasso’s masterpiece “Pigeon with Green Peas”, created in 1911. To get into the museum the thief just broke the window and broke the lock. The perpetrator was so clever that he managed not to cut the picture with a knife, but quickly and accurately pull them out of the frames. The surveillance camera showed that one single thief was operating, and not a whole gang. The police found someone who could be him. The thief was convicted in 2011.But he said that after the theft he fell into a panic and just threw the pictures into the garbage. History raises doubts, and pictures are considered to be missing.
Paul Gauguin’s painting “A Girl at an Open Window”.
This masterpiece of Gauguin was created by him in 1888, and stole it relatively recently – in October 2012. The crime was committed in the museum of Kunsthal, in Dutch Rotterdam. Together with the picture of Gauguin, six more canvases of such famous artists as Picasso, Monet, Matisse and Lucien Freud were lost. Thieves entered the museum at about 3 am. In just three minutes they raced through the museum, took seven pictures and left. Arrived at the site of the police only broke his hands. The approximate cost of stolen masterpieces is 18 million euros. But in November the first suspect, Radu Dogaru, was arrested. He was sentenced to seven years in prison. On December 6, in Berlin, and the second attacker, Adrian Prokop, was also arrested. But the pictures were not found.
Yana Vermeer’s “Concert”.
One of the most famous masters of the 17th century is the Dutchman Jan Vermeer. Today, almost all of his paintings are located in museums or the Royal Collection in London. One of the most famous paintings Vermeer was the “Concert”, which he created in 1664. The canvas depicts a pair of women and a man playing music in a dimly lit living room. As early as 1892, the Parisian art critic Theophile Thor sold the painting from an auction in his estate to the famous philanthropist Isabella Gardner. So the “Concert” got into her personal museum, where she was exhibited since 1903. And on March 18, 1990, a pair of thieves, disguised as Boston policemen, entered the museum allegedly on call. Inside the museum robbers stole 13 paintings, including the masterpiece of Vermeer, as well as paintings by Flinka, Degas and Rembrandt. These creations have never been found, and the “Concert” is generally considered the most expensive lost picture in the world – its price is about 200 million dollars.
Painting by Jan van Eyck “Just judges”.
This crime was dated 10 April 1934. Then, at an exhibition held in the Cathedral of Saint Bavo in the Belgian Ghent, they stole the picture of Jan van Eyck “Just Judges”. This canvas itself was only part of the altar picture “Worship of the Lamb”, created back in 1426-1432. They stole only one part of the 12 panels, while the robbers left a note. In French it was written that the picture was taken from Germany by the Treaty of Versailles. And then began an interesting correspondence. For seven months the Belgian government communicated through letters with a certain person who claimed that he had a picture and demanded a ransom. The thief was revealed on November 25, they turned out to be the local eccentric politician Arsen Godertier. Already dying, he declared that only he knew where the picture was, but he would carry this secret with him to the grave. Since then, there are many versions of the location of the picture. And although many are inclined to the fact that it was destroyed, it is still officially listed on the list of missing works of art.
Rembrandt’s painting “Storm on the Sea of Galilee”.
Along with the “Concerto” by Jan Vermeer from the Boston museum of Isabella Gardner, this canvas also disappeared. The picture is remarkable in that it was the only marine landscape painted by Rembrandt. “Storm” portrayed the miracle of Christ, when he reassured the Sea of Galilee. These events were described in the Gospel of Mark. The robbery itself became the largest in the world of art committed in America. In March 2013, the FBI convened a special press conference, where it was announced the disclosure of the names of performers. Criminal analysis has shown that the pictures were stolen by an entire organized organization, and not by local loners, as was previously thought. True, the authorities said that the investigation in the case is still ongoing, so it is too early to call names. Since then, no new data on the fate of the paintings have been received. And although more than 23 years have passed since the crime, the investigation is still under way.The authorities promise a prize of $ 5 million for information about the location of the paintings.
Claude Monet’s painting “Charing Cross Bridge, London”.
Between 1899 and 1904, the famous impressionist Claude Monet painted a series of paintings dedicated to the London Charing Cross Bridge. They demonstrate the object at different times of the day, for which the artist used a wide color palette. The painting, created in 1901, was in Rotterdam and was stolen from the Kunsthal Museum in October 2012. One of the captured intruders claimed that he had burned the painting to Monet, like other stolen paintings in his mother’s oven. So the thief tried to hide the evidence. And although some pigments were actually found in the furnace, there is no weighty evidence of the words of the criminal and the destruction of the picture. Therefore, art historians are still hoping to find and restore Monet’s masterpiece.
Eight Imperial Faberge Eggs.
Today, Russian tsars are often remembered in connection with art objects that belonged to them. In particular, the collections of Faberge Imperial Eggs, created by him for Alexander III and Nicholas II, are highly appreciated. The representative of the House, Peter Karl Gustavovich Faberge, made the eggs real masterpieces of art, decorating them with precious stones. This work the jeweler carried out between 1885 and 1917 years. In total, 52 known experts of imperial eggs were found in the collection, along with which were exquisite jewelry, exquisite metal details and complex gears, and cogs for winding mechanisms. And in 1918 the new Bolshevik power allowed the plundering of the Faberge House and the royal palace in St. Petersburg. Eggs were confiscated and sent to the Kremlin. Over time, some of them were in the hands of private collectors, others fell into different museums around the world. The fate of eight such items has remained unknown since 1918, they were simply stolen. Today, every Faberge egg is estimated at about a million dollars. Rumors linked the lost rarities with Europe, then with the States, and even with South America. Picture of Vincent Van Gogh “Lovers: The Garden of Poet IV”.
October 21, 1888, the artist wrote to his brother Theo a letter about his latest work. On a vague sketch, the artist painted a series of green cypresses against the background of a pink sky, the moon was painted in the form of a pale-lemon crescent moon. In the foreground of the canvas is a fuzzy soil, sand and a few thistles. The painting shows a pair of lovers – a pale blue man in a yellow hat and a woman in a black skirt and pink corsage. In the same year 1888 the picture was finished. But in the late 1930s, by order of Hitler, many of their private collections and museums were confiscated many “depraved” works of art. Among them was the picture of Van Gogh “Lovers: The Garden of Poet IV”. In fact, Hitler wanted to create his collection of art objects, the largest in the world. For her, those same “depraved” works were intended. The Americans created a special military group, the “Monuments Men”, which was to be found in a war-ravaged Europe and to preserve cultural values. However, after the end of World War II Van Gogh’s masterpiece was not found.