Five paintings worth an estimated $500 million were stolen from the Museum of Modern Art in Paris last night.
The paintings stolen, according to This is London:
- Picasso’s Pigeon With Green Peas
- Matisse’s Pastoral
- Georges Braque’s Landscape With Olive Tree
- Amedeo Modigliani’s Woman With A Fan
- Fernand Léger’s Still Life With A Chandelier
Art critic Louis Maillot said that none of the paintings could be sold on the open market. They were probably taken by art thieves commissioned by a private collector (like the plot of the movie, The Thomas Crown Affair).
“These paintings could never be sold, they would be spotted instantly,” said Maillot. “The usual scenario is that these things are stolen to order for private collectors. They are very difficult to value but the price is enormous.”
A similar theft happened 20 years ago, when thieves disguised as policemen tricked museum guards, handcuffed them, and made it out of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston with 13 works of art valued at over $500 million, including a Vermeer and three works by Rembrandt van Rijn.
Only one thief was caught on camera last night. He was disguised with a hood and a face covering.