The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston has announced that it is extending its $10 million reward for information about the 1990 theft of thirteen paintings and objects from its collection. The institution originally planned to reduce the reward amount at the end of 2017 but has since backtracked.
The heist is one of the biggest unsolved art crimes in the United States. The works that were stolenby artists including Degas, Rembrandt, and Vermeerwere together valued at more than half a billion dollars. They disappeared on March 18, 1990, when two thieves pretending to be Boston police officers tricked the museum’s security into letting them into the building. While there have been multiple suspects over the yearsthe FBI previously made an announcement declaring it knew the identities of the thievesthey were never apprehended, and the agency later revealed that the suspects had all died. The museum’s director of security, Anthony Amore, has since launched a database featuring thirty thousand entries with information related to the theft.
Commenting on its decision to not let the reward expire, the museum’s board of directors said that keeping the reward at $10 million demonstrated the institution’s commitment to recovering the stolen artworks.