Thieves broke into a small Dutch art museum and made off with a painting worth 131 crore by Dutch Golden Age master Frans Hals. The artwork, titled “Two Laughing Boys,” dates from 1626 and depicts two light-hearted youths with a large mug of beer.
The painting was stolen from the Hofje van Mevrouw van Aerden museum in the town of Leerdam. Officers were unable to locate the suspects, but noted that they’d likely broken into the small museum using the back door. After the museum’s manager could grant access to the area and building, it emerged that the back door had been forced open and one painting had been stolen
“Two Laughing Boys” has already been stolen from the museum before — most recently in 2011 and in 1988. The first time, it took police three years to recover the centuries-old work. In 2011 police were able to track it down after six months when the burglars tried to sell it.
It’s the second painting to be stolen from a Dutch museum that was closed due to COVID-19 measures.
In march, thieves stole the Van Gosh painting called “Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring” from a museum located east of Amsterdam. The theft occurred on what would have been van Gogh’s 167th birthday.