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Where Can You See Stolen Paintings Up Close?

Stolen paintings often vanish into the shadowy underworld of art crime, but occasionally resurface in unexpected places, from prestigious auction houses to clandestine private collections. Museums may also exhibit recovered works, offering a rare glimpse into this illicit journey. Have you ever wondered what secrets a once-stolen masterpiece might hold? Join us as we unveil the tales behind the canvas.
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman

There’s a place where you can see five missing art masterpieces all in the same room. In fact, you can get up close to the artwork, and you’ll never get told to step away. At the Stolen Art Gallery, visitors use smartphones or virtual reality headsets to examine masterpieces that haven't been seen in person for years, or sometimes even decades.

The app was created by the Brazilian company Compass UOL and displays famous pieces that were taken from galleries over the last 50 years. Each work of art has an audio description, and users can either view the artwork in private or in a virtual public gallery with other users’ avatars. The digital environment also allows users to make sketches or leave notes about the experience.

Although there are plans to expand the collection, there are currently five pieces on display, all of which were stolen from museums around the world:

  • Rembrandt’s The Storm on the Sea of Galilee, stolen in 1990.

  • Caravaggio’s Nativity With St. Francis and St. Lawrence, stolen in 1969.

  • Édouard Manet’s Chez Tortoni, stolen in 1990.

  • Vincent van Gogh’s Poppy Flowers, stolen in 1977 and again in 2010.

  • Paul Cézanne’s View of Auvers-sur-Oise, stolen in 1999.

Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman is a teacher and blogger who frequently writes for WiseGEEK about topics related to personal finance, parenting, health, nutrition, and education. Learn more...
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman
Margaret Lipman is a teacher and blogger who frequently writes for WiseGEEK about topics related to personal finance, parenting, health, nutrition, and education. Learn more...

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