Stolen Rembrandt Recovered in Serbia, Another Identified in the UK

If the FBI can find the guys who stole three more in an infamous 1990 heist in Boston, the 17th century Dutch Master hits the trifecta.

  • Share
  • Read Later
Rembrandt's 'Bust of an old man in a fur cap'
Novi Sad's Museum / Reuters

Rembrandt's 'Bust of an old man in a fur cap'

A painting by the 17th Century Dutch artist Rembrandt has been recovered by police in Serbia seven years after it went missing, according to the BBC.

The portrait of the artist’s father was found on Monday during a police operation in the town of Sremska Mitrovica, 40 miles south of Novi Sad, the second-largest city in Serbia, where the painting was stolen from the city’s museum in 2006. Four people have been arrested in connection with the theft.

Two armed robbers tied up a guard and stole the Rembrandt, valued at almost $4 million, along with three other paintings, including one by the Flemish painter Peter Paul Rubens, the Los Angeles Times reported.  The Rubens piece, “Seneca,” is reportedly worth an estimated $3.7 million.  The three other paintings are still missing, the BBC noted.

(MORE: Germany Arrests New Suspect in Dutch Art Heist)

This isn’t the first time masked robbers have gotten away with Rembrandt’s “Portrait of the Father.” The piece, which was painted around 1630, has been stolen twice in the span of 10 years, according to the BBC.

Rembrandt pieces seem to be a hot commodity among thieves.  In 2011, a drawing attributed to the Dutch master was stolen from a hotel in Marina del Rey, which, according to the Los Angles Times, was recovered shortly after, but experts have questioned the piece’s authenticity.

And according to the BBC, Serbia has earned the unfortunate reputation for the theft of artworks.  In 2012, police officers in Belgrade recovered the painting “The Boy in the Red Vest” by French Post-Impressionist Paul Cézanne after it was stolen in Switzerland four years earlier, the Daily Mail reported.

(MORE: Priceless 1830 Delacroix Painting Vandalized in Possible ’9/11 Truth’ Attack)

“Portrait of the Father” isn’t the only Rembrandt back in the news this week, either; a portrait donated to Britain’s National Trust in 2010, once thought to be the work of one of the painter’s students, is now believed to be a self-portrait of the master himself, according to CNN. And on Monday the FBI announced that it had identified suspects in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum theft of 1990, in which a group of thieves pretending to be police officers subdued two security guards at the Boston art museum and made off with an estimated $500 million in artwork — among them three Rembrandts, including a self-portrait sketch.