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(Wall Street Journal)   Paris museum with broken security system has $120 million worth of Picasso and Matisse paintings ripped off overnight. "These five paintings are un-sellable, so thieves, sirs, you are imbeciles, now return them"   (online.wsj.com) divider line 70
    More: Obvious, Picasso, Matisse, video surveillance, Paris, Eiffel Tower, French capital's, Interpol, balcony  
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3030 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 20 May 2010 at 3:18 PM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



70 Comments   (+0 »)
   

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2010-05-20 01:10:18 PM
Unless they were stolen to order
 
2010-05-20 01:21:56 PM
Yeah, my presumption with this kind of heist is that the sale is agreed upon before the acquisition.
 
2010-05-20 01:26:56 PM
"These five paintings are un-sellable, so thieves, sirs, you are imbeciles, now return them."

What a great, arrogant, typically French statement.
 
2010-05-20 01:27:13 PM
Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

Believe me someone has this:

upload.wikimedia.org

hanging in their house. And it's not exactly an unknown picture.
 
2010-05-20 02:07:24 PM
what_now: Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

hey... I was wondering where the painting that hangs in our crapper came from.
 
2010-05-20 02:09:23 PM
Blues_X: what_now: Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

hey... I was wondering where the painting that hangs in our crapper came from.


You mean, your crapier?
 
2010-05-20 02:29:53 PM
The obscenely wealthy never steal anything. They're honest, hard-working type people. That's how they got so rich.

Typical libtard behavior -- stealing.
 
2010-05-20 02:30:54 PM
i hate art thieves.
 
2010-05-20 02:31:14 PM
Rev.K: Blues_X: what_now: Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

hey... I was wondering where the painting that hangs in our crapper came from.

You mean, your crapier?



Le zing!
 
2010-05-20 02:37:24 PM
Earguy: "These five paintings are un-sellable, so thieves, sirs, you are imbeciles, now return them."

What a great, arrogant, typically French statement.farkem
I will give them 50k for all 5 paintings.

/so, yah, about that unsellable thing
 
2010-05-20 02:43:35 PM
web.lagalerie.fr

yeah, that's an easy one to hide in any collection

/blames Obama
 
2010-05-20 02:45:03 PM
Someone stole a Matisse? Has anyone checked Nick Nolte's house in Beverly Hills?
 
2010-05-20 02:48:06 PM
Good thing they didn't help themselves to the impressionists because that would be Monet for nothing.
 
2010-05-20 03:06:07 PM
It's not like they're going to list them on Craigslist.

Even if they don't have a buyer, they will, and they'll make a ton of money while the buyer gets them at a steal.
 
2010-05-20 03:10:17 PM
They belong in a museum!
 
2010-05-20 03:21:11 PM
"I am surrounded by impulses!"

"Uuuuhhh, that's IMBECILES, Jacques."

"Oh... imbeciles." (gallic shrug)
 
2010-05-20 03:23:05 PM
In 100 years some rich guy will say he "stumbled upon them" in his late father's attic or some such. "I have no idea where they came from! My father must have bought them through a shady dealer by accident!"
 
2010-05-20 03:26:31 PM
feastofnemesis.files.wordpress.com
Wanted for questioning.

/or Pierce Brosnan, if he's not available.
 
2010-05-20 03:26:37 PM
czetie: Good thing they didn't help themselves to the impressionists because that would be Monet for nothing.

www.w3bbo.com
 
2010-05-20 03:28:18 PM
Why would a "sophisticated team or individual" go after paintings that would be so hard to sell? Either they'll be easy to sell or you let a moron easily steal masterpieces.
 
2010-05-20 03:30:58 PM
static.tvfanatic.com
Approves, but would have replaced them with fakes, so you wouldn't know until it was too late.

/Hotlinked
 
2010-05-20 03:35:57 PM
Art is Showbiz now?
 
2010-05-20 03:38:26 PM
Damn, Scaroth is at it again!

/This is a Fake
 
2010-05-20 03:40:28 PM
I hate art thieves. I don't really know why. I think it's because they're thieves, and I hate thieves, only these ones are pretentious douchebag thieves.


"Oh Buffy, look at that marvelous canvass!"

"Quite right, Reginald, I'll get the climbing equipment out of the credenza!"
 
2010-05-20 03:41:37 PM
UN-SELLABLE?

Idiot. I'LL buy them right farking now. $50, all in.

/I have 50? Any advance? Once, twice...sold.
 
2010-05-20 03:42:44 PM
pd771: Why would a "sophisticated team or individual" go after paintings that would be so hard to sell? Either they'll be easy to sell or you let a moron easily steal masterpieces.

Sophisticated, yeah right. The guy or guys cut a lock, smashed a window, and hauled the loot out. Oh and three security guards heard nothing, despite the bozos breaking a window. Hmmm...sounds like at least one of those guards were in on it or bought off.
 
2010-05-20 03:44:44 PM
Maybe the guy had a grudge.
 
2010-05-20 03:49:18 PM
Probably already hanging in some Sheiks palace in Dubai.
 
2010-05-20 03:49:20 PM
My former barber did time for stealing Renaissance era paintings from a millionaire's house, so I'm really getting a kick out of these responses.

Now that was an awkward coversation. While he's cutting my hair, he mentionns that he was in prison back in the early 80s.
 
2010-05-20 03:52:49 PM
Sybarite: They belong in a museum!

So do you!
 
2010-05-20 03:53:31 PM
czetie: Good thing they didn't help themselves to the impressionists because that would be Monet for nothing.

There you gogh again with the awful puns
 
2010-05-20 03:53:42 PM
That's not a smart thing to say. If the thieves try to sell them, chances are you'll catch them. Tell them they're unsellable and they might just destroy them rather than get caught.

As some have said, these probably were stolen to order. They're hanging over a platinum toilet in the bathroom of some Russian mobster's McMansion or above a bed full of kidnapped Western blond teenagers somewhere in the Middle East.
 
2010-05-20 03:57:01 PM
pd771: Why would a "sophisticated team or individual" go after paintings that would be so hard to sell? Either they'll be easy to sell or you let a moron easily steal masterpieces.

Most art thefts at this evels are more like kidnappings. You steal it then negotiate a price with the insurance company to bring it back. Just like the Gardiner thefts above, these pictures are already in a climate controlled storage locker awaiting the correct wire transfer.

\The current thinking about the Gardiner thefts is that the thief died before telling his representative where he hid the paintings, which explains why there was initially a contact for a payoff but no follow up.
 
2010-05-20 04:00:15 PM
img217.imageshack.us

/Not seen leaving the crime scene
 
2010-05-20 04:01:47 PM
czetie: Good thing they didn't help themselves to the impressionists because that would be Monet for nothing.

The might go for baroque and steal a Rembrandt
 
2010-05-20 04:10:02 PM
Wanted for questioning:
mike.karikas.com
 
2010-05-20 04:41:31 PM
czetie: Good thing they didn't help themselves to the impressionists because that would be Monet for nothing.

I almost literally just face-palmed myself.

You win like 17 or 18 internets today.
 
2010-05-20 04:46:57 PM
Er.

They sell bacon gum, electric panties, Monster cables and Nickleback albums.

NOTHING is "un-sellable".
 
2010-05-20 04:55:15 PM
Often, as with the Munch case a few years ago, these high-profile thefts are more akin to kidnapping than larceny--the thieves are probably holding them for ransom. If all goes well, they'll eventually be found in the trunk of an abandoned car thanks to an "anonymous tip."

What's really scary (and sad) about this case is that these just aren't any old Picasso, Matisse, etc. Each painting is among the best examples of its creator's work in existence.
 
2010-05-20 05:05:32 PM
what_now: Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

Believe me someone has this:
hanging in their house. And it's not exactly an unknown picture.


That can't be worth much. It's not even on black velvet.

/"A Friend In Need" FTW.
 
2010-05-20 05:26:01 PM
pd771: Why would a "sophisticated team or individual" go after paintings that would be so hard to sell? Either they'll be easy to sell or you let a moron easily steal masterpieces.

Frequently, famous paintings are stolen for a specific person. That's why they never turn up in shady auction houses; some rich fark who thinks he deserves a famous artwork more than anyone else in the world finds some thieves and says "I'll give you this giant farking sack of money if you'll go steal that painting for me." They weren't "un-sellable," they were sold before the thieves even entered the building.
 
2010-05-20 05:32:07 PM
Cornelius Dribble: Often, as with the Munch case a few years ago, these high-profile thefts are more akin to kidnapping than larceny--the thieves are probably holding them for ransom. If all goes well, they'll eventually be found in the trunk of an abandoned car thanks to an "anonymous tip."

What's really scary (and sad) about this case is that these just aren't any old Picasso, Matisse, etc. Each painting is among the best examples of its creator's work in existence.


Even worse many criminals and organized crime syndicates are believed to just use master art as collateral in order to finance their shenanigans as they can't just walk into the local Wells Fargo and ask for a loan.
 
2010-05-20 05:39:18 PM
oldebayer: what_now: Like the Rembrandts stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum?

Believe me someone has this:
hanging in their house. And it's not exactly an unknown picture.

That can't be worth much. It's not even on black velvet.

/"A Friend In Need" FTW.


I'm ashamed to say that we had a velvet painting of a torero stolen from our trailer when I was a kid. You, as a resident of New Mexico, can understand my inner conflict, I'm sure.
 
2010-05-20 05:48:50 PM
I still refuse to believe that the art museums of the world are actually displaying originals. They HAVE to be reproductions. The originals are priceless, and too easy to damage.

That's the only "conspiracy theory" that I actually believe. The various art museums of the world are secretly agreeing to pretend that they are all displaying originals, and the real paintings are either kept in a vault, or are actually owned by private collectors.
 
2010-05-20 05:51:00 PM
KatjaMouse: Cornelius Dribble: Often, as with the Munch case a few years ago, these high-profile thefts are more akin to kidnapping than larceny--the thieves are probably holding them for ransom. If all goes well, they'll eventually be found in the trunk of an abandoned car thanks to an "anonymous tip."

What's really scary (and sad) about this case is that these just aren't any old Picasso, Matisse, etc. Each painting is among the best examples of its creator's work in existence.

Even worse many criminals and organized crime syndicates are believed to just use master art as collateral in order to finance their shenanigans as they can't just walk into the local Wells Fargo and ask for a loan.


Anyone interested in this aspect should totally read the Irish Game by Matthew Hart excellent read
 
2010-05-20 06:32:28 PM
Newsweek had an interesting article about where these works might show up. Basically it says commissioned heists are rare (if not urban legend altogether). Far more likely is the possibility that the thieves hope to ransom the paintings back. Or perhaps they're just shortsighted morons that didn't contemplate how to unload the works.
 
2010-05-20 07:01:08 PM
As I'm sure it's been said, if this wasn't a commissioned theft, I would be very surprised.
 
2010-05-20 07:24:45 PM
Who let Parker get bored?
 
2010-05-20 07:32:54 PM
Trustafarian: As I'm sure it's been said, if this wasn't a commissioned theft, I would be very surprised.

You've watched too many heist movies.

Thieves are not an honorable lot. If commissioned thefts were common, some rich collector would have been fingered by an apprehended thief at one time or another. I cannot find a single example of this happening in the last 50 years, can you?

The closest I can come is the occasional case of insurance fraud, where somebody hires a thief to rob his own mansion. As for museum heists, the risks of exposure and incarcination are too great for the rewards.

Besides, most billionaires are not aesthetes. Insofar as they covet original art, it is for the investment value, which in the case of purloined masterpieces is nil. For the few who truly appreciate art for its own sake, a well-made copy is sufficient.


/The Mona Lisa hangs on my living-room wall
//signed on the back by Leonardo da Vinci himself!
 
2010-05-20 07:47:40 PM
Also wanted for questioning:

img704.imageshack.us

/so many days chasing her
//so many nights doing unmentionables in her name
 
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