STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Van Gogh painting stolen from Dutch museum closed due to coronavirus outbreak

Director Evert van Os of the Singer Laren Museum, named the painting as the "Parsonage Garden at Neunen in Spring".

Published: 30th March 2020 07:49 PM  |   Last Updated: 30th March 2020 10:30 PM   |  A+A-

Two people look at the glass door which was smashed during a break-in at the Singer Museum in Laren, Netherlands, Monday March 30, 2020.

Two people look at the glass door which was smashed during a break-in at the Singer Museum in Laren, Netherlands, Monday March 30, 2020. (Photo | AP)

By AFP

THE HAQUE: Thieves stole a painting by Dutch master Vincent van Gogh early Monday in a daring heist from a museum that was closed to the public because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 1884 painting, titled the "Parsonage Garden at Neunen in Spring", was taken during a pre-dawn break-in at the Singer Laren Museum near Amsterdam.

The criminals smashed through a glass door and then took the painting, which is valued at up to six million euros ($6.6 million). "I am shocked and unbelievably annoyed this theft has happened," Jan Rudolph de Lorm, one of the museum's directors, told a press conference.

"Art is there to be seen, to be enjoyed, to inspire and to bring solace, particularly in these troubled times in which we find ourselves," De Lorm said. The theft happened on what would have been the 167th birthday of the brilliant yet troubled artist.

"Parsonage Garden at Neunen in Spring" comes from relatively early on in Van Gogh's career, before the prolific artist embarked on his trademark post-impressionist paintings such as "Sunflowers" and his vivid self-portraits.

FOLLOW CORONAVIRUS LIVE UPDATES HERE

The painting was on loan from its owners, the Groninger Museum in the north of the Netherlands, as part of an exhibition. The Singer Laren museum closed two weeks ago in compliance with Dutch government measures aimed at tackling the spread of COVID-19.

Dutch police said the criminals had broken in at around 3:15 am (0115 GMT). "Police officers immediately rushed to the scene but the perpetrators had escaped," Dutch police said in a statement, appealing for witnesses.

'Hunt is on'

The painting has an estimated value of between one million and six million euros, Dutch art detective Arthur Brand said. "The hunt is on," said Brand, who is known for recovering stolen Nazi art including "Hitler's Horses".

It was the third time the famous Dutch master's works have been targeted in the Netherlands since the 1990s, Brand said.

"To me this looks like the work of a copycat," Brand told AFP, adding the modus operandi was similar to the other two cases.

"The thieves only went for a Van Gogh, while there are other works too in the museum," he said. Asked whether he thought there was enough security at the museum Brand said "it is very difficult to say.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp