20 years ago, on March 18, 1990, a pair of thieves pretending to be police pulled off what’s considered the largest art heist in history, stealing 13 artworks, including paintings by Rembrandt, Vermeer and Manet, from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. They spent an amazing 81 minutes selecting their items. Their take is estimated at perhaps $500 million. And the crime is still unsolved.
I’m sure this is a high priority theft. I’m sure the authorities are searching diligently. I’m sure no stone is being left unturned. I’m sure every nook and cranny is being investigated from top to bottom. Except for MY house.
What’s up with that? I appreciate art. I have art in my home. Good stuff, too. I have a nice painting of four dogs playing poker hanging over the fireplace. And my Elvis on Velvet painting is frequently the subject of conversation when people stop by.
So why is my house too good to be searched? Are my taste not expensive enough? Do I appear to not like things that cost a lot? I have a Rembrandt in my house. Of course, it’s a tube of toothpaste. And I have something SIMILAR to a Vermeer… I have veneer on my cabinets.
And to shock you even more, I have several objets d’art around the house. My Spam Can Wind Chime is a one of a kind. The yard art collection is a favorite of the neighborhood. They take turns coming by to complain about the pink flamingo flock and the ’62 Rambler up on blocks. Art is in the eye of the beholder… I’ve heard somewhere.
If you visit the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum on your next visit to Boston, you might be surprised to see the frames of the missing works hanging empty on the walls. It is their hope that the pieces will one day be returned to their rightful home. Me? I don’t have that luxury. If someone takes my Velvet Elvis off the wall, I’m gonna have to replace it pretty quick to cover up the dust ring.
And that’s MY take.