You can now read 10 articles a month for free. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

Picasso, Monets stolen in Dutch heist

“Harlequin Head,’’ by Pablo Picasso, was among the paintings stolen Tuesday from a Rotterdam museum.

Rotterdam Police/AP

“Harlequin Head,’’ by Pablo Picasso, was among the paintings stolen Tuesday from a Rotterdam museum.

AMSTERDAM — Thieves broke into a Rotterdam museum on Tuesday and walked off with works from the likes of Picasso, Monet, Gauguin, and Matisse potentially worth hundreds of millions.

Police have not said how the thieves pulled off the early-hours heist, but an expert who tracks stolen art said the robbers clearly knew what they were after. ‘‘Those thieves got one hell of a haul,’’ said Chris Marinello, who directs the Art Loss Register.

Continue reading below

The heist at the Kunsthal museum is one of the largest in years in the Netherlands, and is a stunning blow for the private Triton Foundation collection, which was being exhibited publicly as a group for the first time.

‘‘It’s every museum director’s worst nightmare,’’ said Kunsthal’s director, Emily Ansenk, who had been in Istanbul on business but returned immediately.

She declined to reveal any details of how the thieves got in and out with the paintings.

The stolen works were: Picasso’s ‘‘Harlequin Head”; Monet’s ‘‘Waterloo Bridge, London’’ and ‘‘Charing Cross Bridge, London”; Matisse’s ‘‘Reading Girl in White and Yellow”; Gauguin’s ‘‘Girl in Front of Open Window”; Meyer de Haan’s ‘‘Self-Portrait,’ ; and Lucian Freud’s ‘‘Woman with Eyes Closed.’’

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week