The 1884 work, Spring Garden, was taken in the early hours after thieves smashed open a glass door to get into the Singer Laren museum in the Netherlands.
Vincent van Gogh’s Spring Garden was stolen from a Netherlands museum closed due to the coronavirus pandemic
Police rushed there after an alarm went off but the raiders had fled.
Museum bosses said they were “angry, shocked, sad”.
Singer Laren museum director Jan Rudolph de Lorm added: “This beautiful and moving painting by one of our greatest artists stolen – removed from the community.
“It is very bad for the Groninger Museum, it is very bad for the Singer, but it is terrible for us all because art exists to be seen and shared by us, the community, to enjoy to draw inspiration from and to draw comfort from, especially in these difficult times.”
The value of the painting, which was on loan from another Dutch museum, the Groninger, was not immediately known.
A team including forensics and art theft experts are studying video footage and questioning neighbours.
In 2007 thieves stole seven works from the museum’s sculpture garden, including a bronze cast of The Thinker by Auguste Rodin.
It was recovered a few days later but was missing a leg.
The 1884 painting was stolen from the Singer Laren museum after thieves smashed open a glass door to get in