The work in question is entitled “The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring 1884.”

By Cailey Rizzo
March 31, 2020

A Van Gogh painting was stolen from a Netherlands museum that is currently closed in light of coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

The Singer Laren museum, located less than 20 miles southeast of Amsterdam, reported a burglary on Monday when a thief reportedly smashed one of the museum’s doors, ran in and stole the painting.

The work in question  is entitled “The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring 1884” and was on loan from the Groninger Museum in the northern Dutch city of Groningen.

“We are deeply shocked, angry and saddened,” museum director Jan Rudolph de Lorm said in a statement on the museum’s website. “A magnificent and poignant painting by one of our greatest artists has been taken from the community. It is terrible for the Groninger Museum and for Singer Laren, but above all for every one of us. Art exists to be shared, to enjoy, to inspire and offer comfort, particularly in times such as these. Art is vital to our culture.”

Singer Laren Museum Evert van Os speaks to the press outside the museum on March 30, 2020 in Laren, about 30 kilometres southeast of Amsterdam, closed to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic, after the 1884 painting by Vincent van Gogh "Parsonage Garden at Neunen in Spring" was stolen. The painting has an estimated value of between one to six million euros, local media said. The criminals entered the museum at around 3.15 am (0115 GMT) by breaking open a front glass door, police and Dutch news reports said.
| Credit: ROBIN VAN LONKHUIJSEN / Getty Images

When the museum was allegedly broken into, it set off an alarm that triggered a police response at about 3:15 a.m. But by the time police arrived, there was no thief in sight.

An investigation into the crime has been launched, with assistance from forensic investigators, detectives and a national crime squad, specializing in art theft.

The painting was completed in 1884 and has a value up to $6.2 million (£5 million), according to The Guardian. It was painted in his father’s vicarage garden in Nuenen, a rural part of the Netherlands, when Van Gogh had moved back in with his family.

The work was stolen on Van Gogh’s birthday, 167 years to the date.

It is not the first time artwork has been stolen from the Singer Laren museum. In 2007, thieves made away with seven works from the sculpture garden, including a bronze cast of Auguste Rodin’s famous “The Thinker.” When the work was found a few days later, it was missing its leg.