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  1. #1
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    Five masterpieces stolen from Paris modern art museum

    Five masterpieces stolen from Paris modern art museum


    Five paintings by Picasso, Matisse and other great artists have been stolen from the Museum of Modern Art in Paris, French officials say.

    The paintings are estimated to be worth just under 100m euros (£86m; $123m).
    They were taken overnight on Wednesday and reported missing early on Thursday, officials say.

    The museum, across the River Seine from the Eiffel Tower, has been cordoned off by investigators.

    Continue reading the main story In pictures: Stolen Paris masterpieces

    Security camera footage reportedly shows someone entering the museum through a window during the night.

    "This is a serious crime to the heritage of humanity," Christophe Girard, deputy culture secretary at the Paris Town Hall, told a news conference.

    The theft was committed by "one or more individuals who were obviously organised", Mr Girard said.

    He added that investigators were looking into how the museum's security system and several guards were outsmarted by the thief or thieves.

    Mr Girard put the value of the stolen paintings at just under 100m euros (£86m; $123m). They had earlier been estimated to be worth some 500m euros (£431m; $618m).

    The five missing paintings are Dove with Green Peas by Pablo Picasso (painted in 1911), Pastoral by Henri Matisse (1906), Olive Tree near l'Estaque by Georges Braque (1906), Woman with Fan by Amedeo Modigliani (1919) and Still Life with Candlestick by Fernand Leger (1922).

    Broken padlock Museum officials discovered the theft early on Thursday, when they found a smashed window and a broken padlock which had been cut to gain access to the five paintings.

    GREAT ART HEISTS

    Continue reading the main story

    • February 2008: Four paintings by Cezanne, Degas, Van Gogh and Monet are stolen from the EG Buehrle Collection, a private museum in Zurich. The Van Gogh and Monet paintings were recovered
    • August 2004: Two paintings by Edvard Munch, The Scream and Madonna, are stolen from the Munch Museum in Oslo. Recovered two years later
    • April 1991: Twenty paintings are stolen from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Found shortly afterwards in abandoned car nearby
    • March 1990: Works by Vermeer, Rembrandt and Manet are stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. Still lost
    It is still unclear why the alarm systems did not alert staff earlier, reports the BBC's David Chazan in Paris.

    There has not been anything comparable since the 1990 theft at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston of a Vermeer, several Rembrandts, Degas and other masterpieces, says BBC Arts Correspondent David Sillito.

    None of these works has yet been recovered.

    Though there is often speculation that works have been "stolen to order" for dishonest collectors, experts in the field say that in reality this is very unusual.

    Investigators think that international criminal gangs use art works effectively as a form of currency.

    For criminals dealing in drugs or weapon, a rolled up painting is away of carrying very large amounts of "currency", even if it is one tenth of the value at auction, the BBC's arts correspondent adds.

    The Museum of Modern Art of the City of Paris, located in the east wing of the Palais de Tokyo building, is separate from the bigger and better-known national collection of modern art at the Pompidou Centre.


  2. #2
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    I have no idea about why some idiots would go out of their way to steal something they could not possibly sell on the open market.

  3. #3
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    ^ Oooh, lots of private buyers, LT. Lots.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy
    I have no idea about why some idiots would go out of their way to steal something they could not possibly sell on the open market.
    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    Mr Girard put the value of the stolen paintings at just under 100m euros (£86m; $123m)
    even getting 1 percent of their market value is a pretty good retirement fund.

  5. #5
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    ^^ But who could they possibly tell let alone show their new purchases too?

    I don't know about the underground art market but I reckon a Picasso would be worth millions of dollars of arrest warrants.

  6. #6
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    Professional job... Definitely stolen to order...

    In fact, If you ask me I'd bet my guesses on an inside job... There's no profit but the pictures will surely go up in value.

  7. #7
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    Stolen to order, no doubt. Inside job, too. You couldn't help yourself a TV from Tesco without an alarm going off, yet this guy can simply hop through a broken window & take all that? Not a bad day's work, to be fair.

    I might check out the Lowry in Salford tomorrow & see what it's saying.

  8. #8
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    10 years in the ville....

  9. #9
    Guest Member S Landreth's Avatar
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    Well besides the Picasso,…….the guy has awful taste.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by S Landreth View Post
    Well besides the Picasso,…….the guy has awful taste.
    Modigliani, Leger, Matisse bad taste? Sorry there's not a Norman Rockwell in the lot for you.
    Seriously, this is definitely and order job as mentioned earlier.

  11. #11
    Thailand Expat zygote1's Avatar
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    Previously stolen fine arts (post 1970) have seen the art shipped to;
    1. Middle East
    2. Former east bloc nations
    3. Japan
    4. Hong Kong
    I would expect an asian buyer for this theft.

  12. #12
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    Taksin was in paris was'nt he ?

  13. #13
    Philippine Expat Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    If French, they'll probably surrender like that armored car guard.

  14. #14
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    I suspect it was a direct order by some rich billionaire in the ME

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy View Post
    ^^ But who could they possibly tell let alone show their new purchases too?
    This has been happening for decades. The buyers don't need to show, they just need to have. You got a billion or so, the only things you want are what you can't have.
    Quote Originally Posted by Humbert View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by S Landreth View Post
    Well besides the Picasso,…….the guy has awful taste.
    Modigliani, Leger, Matisse bad taste? Sorry there's not a Norman Rockwell in the lot for you.
    Seriously, this is definitely and order job as mentioned earlier.
    Don't forget the Braque. Leger....meh, you can have it. I'd kill for Woman with Fan.
    I reckon is was a job to order; a master thief with up to five buyers.

  16. #16
    Pronce. PH said so AGAIN!
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    The thief should have gone for the impressionists, Monet for nothing...

  17. #17
    Guest Member S Landreth's Avatar
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    Painting #1



    Painting #2



    Painting #3



    Painting #4



    Painting #5


    There they are,……all the stolen paintings.

    I have all the paintings in my possession. Lucky you! I am gonna give you ONE. Which one you takin’ home?
    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

  18. #18
    Philippine Expat Davis Knowlton's Avatar
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    Number 1.

  19. #19
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    I can imagine they will get used as currency and traded around the underworld for arms and drugs.

  20. #20
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    Lucky you! I am gonna give you ONE. Which one you takin’ home?
    Well number 5 is obviously where primary school students cut pictures out of magazines and glue them onto some paper.

    So not that one.

    I'd probably take number one. Use the rest for toilet paper.

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