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(Slate)   What do art thieves do with famous paintings the whole world knows are stolen? Besides staging elaborate Magritte-referencing capers to return the art to its rightful place on the gallery walls, all under the noses of the authorities, I mean   (slate.com) divider line 53
    More: Interesting, history of painting, Magritte, stolen art, art dealer, staging, first sale, Matisse, paintings  
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12298 clicks; posted to Main » on 18 Oct 2012 at 1:04 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-18 12:49:09 PM
Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.
 
2012-10-18 01:05:00 PM
The ransom thing would be the way to go. Now someone just needs to a non-Hollywood way to collect a ransom and get away with it.
 
2012-10-18 01:05:41 PM
So, I'm a bit confused by the article. I understand that the law doesn't allow a purchaser to be criminally prosecuted unless the authorities prove that they knew the painting was stolen. But the painting is still returned to the original owner or their heirs, right? They're still out millions of dollars.

Sounds like a good reason to make sure that you're not buying a stolen painting to me.
 
2012-10-18 01:06:07 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


That's what ruins a lot of caper movies for me. Ever since Die Hard, there is this tugging in my brain that asks, "and how do you expect to ever profit from this, Ms. Sandiego?"

/unless it's the famed Baseball Diamond
 
2012-10-18 01:10:59 PM

Fano: downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.

That's what ruins a lot of caper movies for me. Ever since Die Hard, there is this tugging in my brain that asks, "and how do you expect to ever profit from this, Ms. Sandiego?"

/unless it's the famed Baseball Diamond


i think that one of the few movies that had a decent heist was goodfellas. they robbed the money off some plane by bribing a security guard. walked in, took money, and then eventually killed everyone involved in the caper. it took god knows how much planning and foresight to pull it off... but in the end, the actual criminal act was: walk in, take money, walk out.  and don't spend the money for a little while
 
2012-10-18 01:11:02 PM
I can't rember the name of the book right off but it's about the theft of the Mona Lisa in the early 1900's. the author theorizes that the theifs made six copies of the painting and sold them all to private collectors. They then had some guy get caught with the painting. They made a bunch of money and the people who bought the fakes couldn't do a thing about it because they couldn't admit that they thought they were buying the stolen art work. I'm on my phone right now so can't look up the title but I'll try and find it. It's a pretty interesting read
 
2012-10-18 01:11:46 PM
1) Steal famous painting
2) Make several good forgeries
3) Sell each forgery on the black market for tens of millions. Tell each buyer they are getting the original. They can display it as "a good copy" while they secretly know it's the real thing, but can't ever show it to an expert for appraisal.
 
2012-10-18 01:15:56 PM
www.impressionist-art-gallery.com
 
2012-10-18 01:17:53 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


I'm sure there are probably some oligarchs/drug lords/etc who don't care and know their friends wouldn't care if it was stolen either. It gives one that "Bond villan" mystique.
 
2012-10-18 01:18:09 PM
 
2012-10-18 01:18:41 PM

Ring of Fire: I can't rember the name of the book right off but it's about the theft of the Mona Lisa in the early 1900's. the author theorizes that the theifs made six copies of the painting and sold them all to private collectors. They then had some guy get caught with the painting. They made a bunch of money and the people who bought the fakes couldn't do a thing about it because they couldn't admit that they thought they were buying the stolen art work. I'm on my phone right now so can't look up the title but I'll try and find it. It's a pretty interesting read


images1.wikia.nocookie.net
images1.wikia.nocookie.net

Approves
 
2012-10-18 01:22:41 PM

moefuggenbrew: [www.impressionist-art-gallery.com image 227x128]


First thing I thought of.
 
2012-10-18 01:23:26 PM

moefuggenbrew: [www.impressionist-art-gallery.com image 227x128]


I just watched that last night, too, so that's the first thing that went through my head when I saw this thread.
 
2012-10-18 01:25:45 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


Maybe it's the thrill of the heist. Maybe it's to prove other thieves you can do it. Maybe it's for the lulz. And maybe, just maybe, some men just want to watch the world burn.
 
2012-10-18 01:26:33 PM

DeadlockVictim: moefuggenbrew: [www.impressionist-art-gallery.com image 227x128]

First thing I thought of.


Get out of my head - it's not safe in there. :)
 
2012-10-18 01:26:51 PM
i49.tinypic.com
 
2012-10-18 01:28:02 PM
Do they sing "swinging on a star" while they commit teh crime?
 
2012-10-18 01:28:28 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


You decorate your Harem.
 
2012-10-18 01:29:56 PM
img.photobucket.com
 
2012-10-18 01:30:46 PM
 
2012-10-18 01:31:48 PM

LindenFark: 1) Steal famous painting
2) Make several good forgeries
3) Sell each forgery on the black market for tens of millions. Tell each buyer they are getting the original. They can display it as "a good copy" while they secretly know it's the real thing, but can't ever show it to an expert for appraisal.


Did it better:

media.tumblr.com
 
2012-10-18 01:35:56 PM
They make movies, which leads to Rene Russo getting naked on screen.

And it is good.
 
2012-10-18 01:37:07 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


I'm sure someone well off could "invest" in a discount famous painting only to hide it away for a couple decades and "find" it again.
 
2012-10-18 01:37:56 PM
People who buy art on the black market are doing it for one reason: to eat it without having to share.
 
2012-10-18 01:39:46 PM

downstairs: Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


You don't always need to. For a certain kind of buyer, just having it would be enough. It's that tingly feeling when you know that's your dirty little secret. Hell, I don't have any figures on this, but I'm willing to bet that most specifically-targeted high-profile thefts like that aren't "steal it, then find a buyer," they're more "hire some thieves to steal a specific painting." Taking money or something easily-fenceable is one thing, but stuff like this? A smart thief wouldn't take that kind of risk without a sure profit, and a dumb thief couldn't pull it off without getting caught in the attempt.
 
2012-10-18 01:41:35 PM
The best things in life are free
but you can tell it to the birds and bees
Give me MONET
that's what i want....
 
2012-10-18 01:43:39 PM
"Once a painting changes hands two or three times, buyers can plausibly (and sometimes honestly) claim that they thought it was legitimate."
HAHA!

"Some don't want to pay the $95 search fee,"

To me, most of the "art" is grossly overpriced like diamonds and other trinkets. But if I was paying thousands or millions on anything, I'd take some time to authenticate it.
 
2012-10-18 01:46:59 PM

downstairs: Who would want a stolen famous painting? You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


You assume the artwork was stolen as a status symbol or for the value of the thing. Did you ever stop to consider that maybe it was stolen so that it could be appreciated?
 
2012-10-18 01:56:01 PM
"...a stolen painting usually goes for around 10 percent of its legitimate auction value in the first sale"

See also: stolen jewelry, TVs, car stereos, etc etc etc
 
2012-10-18 01:59:08 PM

groppet: Do they sing "swinging on a star" while they commit teh crime?


I just watched that last night, so I'm getting a kick, etc.

/Bunny! Ball ball!
 
2012-10-18 02:00:45 PM
FTFA "The Black Market."

Well thanks for that groundbreaking piece of investigative journalism, Slate.
 
2012-10-18 02:01:23 PM
flip a really expensive yacht, take Renee Russo to an island paradise, see her tanning topless, then fark her?
 
2012-10-18 02:20:03 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


You can if your friends are all crooks too.
 
2012-10-18 02:21:08 PM
They wait twenty five years and resell in a certain european country... *Grin* Look it up.
 
2012-10-18 02:26:42 PM
Hooray for Captain Spaulding The African explorer!
 
2012-10-18 02:28:30 PM
Last Man on Earth:
I'm willing to bet that most specifically-targeted high-profile thefts like that aren't "steal it, then find a buyer," they're more "hire some thieves to steal a specific painting."

BINGO. You do not steal famous art and then go looking for a rich buyer. This is some rich sociopath who hates the fact that he can't just own whatever he wants and has little fear of legal repercussions. Basically, like that character from Star Trek who kidnapped Commander Data to put in his private museum.
 
2012-10-18 02:42:36 PM
is this one of the art works? it was in the article

pagead2.googlesyndication.com
 
2012-10-18 02:46:55 PM

wiredroach: Cue "Sinnerman."


That is an awesome sequence, and the song fits it perfectly.
 
2012-10-18 02:53:49 PM

BuckTurgidson: downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.

You can if your friends are all crooks too.


I would imagine it's probably going somewhere like China or Russia. A historically plundered nation now awash with their own global elites, who want to hang trophies on the wall of their victories over the West. A badge of pride, a note of authenticity.
 
2012-10-18 02:54:01 PM
hey people who just stole paintings
here's your #1 google result for how to sell that painting you stole
 
2012-10-18 02:54:36 PM
Well of course they are all sold to Dragon that uses them to ensare Jonathan Hemlock to carry out his evil deeds.
 
2012-10-18 02:54:36 PM

Bored Horde: BuckTurgidson: downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.

You can if your friends are all crooks too.

I would imagine it's probably going somewhere like China or Russia. A historically plundered nation now awash with their own global elites, who want to hang trophies on the wall of their victories over the West. A badge of pride, a note of authenticity.


couldn't they just get a photo of a wal-mart?
 
2012-10-18 02:59:19 PM

downstairs: Interesting.  I've actually always wondered that.  Who would want a stolen famous painting?  You can't show it off to your friends and all that.


People make replicas. You can say it's a really good one.
 
2012-10-18 03:37:00 PM

Eckyhade: Well of course they are all sold to Dragon that uses them to ensare Jonathan Hemlock to carry out his evil deeds.


Hemlock's more of a Pissarro man, though.
 
2012-10-18 03:44:46 PM

SphericalTime: So, I'm a bit confused by the article. I understand that the law doesn't allow a purchaser to be criminally prosecuted unless the authorities prove that they knew the painting was stolen. But the painting is still returned to the original owner or their heirs, right? They're still out millions of dollars.


It depends. If it takes a long time for the painting to show up and it was insured, then it's returned to the insurance company as they've paid the owner for it. The insurance company generally offers it to the original owner at whatever the insurer paid them for it. If they don't want it, then it's sold on the open market.
 
2012-10-18 04:14:44 PM

Dwight_Yeast: SphericalTime: So, I'm a bit confused by the article. I understand that the law doesn't allow a purchaser to be criminally prosecuted unless the authorities prove that they knew the painting was stolen. But the painting is still returned to the original owner or their heirs, right? They're still out millions of dollars.

It depends. If it takes a long time for the painting to show up and it was insured, then it's returned to the insurance company as they've paid the owner for it. The insurance company generally offers it to the original owner at whatever the insurer paid them for it. If they don't want it, then it's sold on the open market.


Huh. Okay. I didn't know that. Although I suddenly realize that was the plot of half a dozen Leverage episodes, that never sunk in. Thanks.

But the new owner is out all of that money they paid for it, as soon as it's discovered stolen.
 
2012-10-18 04:25:55 PM

Honest Bender: downstairs: Who would want a stolen famous painting? You can't show it off to your friends and all that.

You assume the artwork was stolen as a status symbol or for the value of the thing. Did you ever stop to consider that maybe it was stolen so that it could be appreciated?



Of all the reponses, yours wins.
 
2012-10-18 04:57:33 PM

DrGunsforHands:


Oh man I have to watch that movie again.
 
2012-10-18 06:05:00 PM

SphericalTime: Dwight_Yeast: SphericalTime: So, I'm a bit confused by the article. I understand that the law doesn't allow a purchaser to be criminally prosecuted unless the authorities prove that they knew the painting was stolen. But the painting is still returned to the original owner or their heirs, right? They're still out millions of dollars.

It depends. If it takes a long time for the painting to show up and it was insured, then it's returned to the insurance company as they've paid the owner for it. The insurance company generally offers it to the original owner at whatever the insurer paid them for it. If they don't want it, then it's sold on the open market.

Huh. Okay. I didn't know that. Although I suddenly realize that was the plot of half a dozen Leverage episodes, that never sunk in. Thanks.

But the new owner is out all of that money they paid for it, as soon as it's discovered stolen.


Buyer Beware.
 
2012-10-18 06:41:27 PM

Incontinent_dog_and_monkey_rodeo: one reason: to eat it


i244.photobucket.com
Approves
 
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