The Story of the Gardner Museum Robbery, The Gardner Museum Robbery is one of the most famous crimes in American history

 The Story of the Gardner Museum Robbery, The Gardner Museum Robbery is one of the most famous crimes in American history

Theft from the Gardner Museum:

On March 18, 1990, two men dressed in black and wearing masks entered the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston for a planned private preview party. They overpowered the security guards, handcuffed them and loaded hundreds of priceless works from the museum's collection onto two trucks. The entire flight lasted less than 90 seconds. After that, their identities remained secret for nearly two decades until they were revealed to be brothers Richard and Jonathan Cosell, both of whom were convicted in 2011 and each sentenced to 85 years in prison.

The Gardner Museum theft was one of the most famous crimes in American history, but it was not unprecedented. In fact, there have been at least eight other art thefts before this one, including one from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum itself! The theft began around 2:30 a.m. on March 18, when two thieves walked toward a guard outside the museum's front door, wearing black masks over their faces. One man had a bandana around his face so that his eyes could only be seen through narrow slits cut above his nose and mouth. They demanded money from him while pointing guns at him; After giving them $1 million (which they spent on food), they entered the building with him, still holding his gun holster which had three additional rounds hidden inside.

The thieves were never found, but since then many theories have been put forward to try to explain what happened from working inside to working outside to working indoors involving other interior work. But no matter how you look at it, it remains a mystery.

The most famous paintings stolen from the Gardner Museum:

The two thieves broke into a display case in the museum's famous “Flemish Tapestry” room and stole 13 works of art: four drawings by Rembrandt, a painting by Vermeer, two paintings by Gainsborough, “Lunch on the grass” by Manet. ), and five drawings by Degas - including This "ballet scene" - three paintings by Renoir ("Portrait of Dr Gachet"), and a painting by Edouard Vuillard ("Woman with a tea service")

The Gardner Museum is one of the oldest public art museums and has a collection including works by Rembrandt, Degas, Monet and Picasso. The stolen works include Caravaggio’s “Christ in the House of Martha and Mary”; “The Boy with the Pipe” by Degas; “The Concert” by Renoir; “Washington at Leisure” by Winslow Homer; “Seated Maja” by Vermeer; “A Lady and a Gentleman” by Vermeer; and “Massacre at Chios,” a 16th-century Greek mythical painting.

The aftermath of the Gardner Museum theft:

The Gardner Museum theft was a blow to Boston's arts community, which was recovering from a more recent scandal: the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings. The attack caused millions of dollars in damage to the city's historic buildings, including many of its museums. 

In addition to destroying irreplaceable works of art, the attack also left an indelible mark on Boston's cultural landscape: it made clear that it was dangerous for ordinary citizens to visit these institutions without putting themselves in harm's way. As a result, Boston's museums have struggled to stay relevant ever since.

The Gardner Museum theft seemed at first glance almost unprecedented; There were no known examples of other major art thefts before they occurred. But recent years have seen several high-profile cases around the world where valuable works of art have fallen into the hands of criminals: in 2014, thieves stole jewelry worth $50 million from Mercer Museum, Hong Kong; In 2015, they stole $1 million from him

It is said that this theft may be part of an elaborate plan to sell some or all of the stolen paintings at auction or in private sales. In 2011, federal prosecutors charged three men with involvement in an unnamed criminal enterprise involving art theft.

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