16/10/2012 16:03 BST | Updated 16/10/2012 16:04 BST

Art Heist: Paintings By Picasso, Monet And Matisse Stolen From Kunsthal Museum In Netherlands

Seven priceless paintings by world-famous artists including Pablo Picasso, Claude Monet and Henri Matisse have been stolen from a museum in the Netherlands in a daring raid.

The works, worth millions of pounds, were on display in the Kunsthal museum in Rotterdam and went missing in the early hours of Tuesday.

The stolen works were Picasso’s 1971 ‘Harlequin Head’; Monet’s 1901 ‘Waterloo Bridge, London’ and ‘Charing Cross Bridge, London’; Henri Matisse’s 1919 'Reading Girl in White and Yellow' and Paul Gauguin’s 1898 'Girl in Front of Open Window'.


The heist left huge gaps on the museum's walls

The other two were Meyer de Haan’s ‘Self-Portrait,’ around 1890, and Lucian Freud’s 2002 work ‘Woman with Eyes Closed’, according to the Associated Press.

“There was a break-in during the night and a few paintings were taken that represent a considerable sum,” Rotterdam police spokeswoman Patricia Wessels told Sky News.

“A major investigation is under way and forensics are at the scene.”

The artwork was on display as part of the museum’s 20th anniversary and belongs to the private Triton Collection.

The attraction has been closed while forensic teams examine the scene and police study CCTV footage.

Experts said that it would be virtually impossible for the works to be sold on the open market.