Egyptian authorities were trying to trace a Van Gogh painting said to be worth $55 million on Sunday, after it disappeared from a museum in Cairo.
Security forces secured the area outside the Mahmoud Khalil Museum to allow criminal investigation experts to examine fingerprints at the crime scene.
Local newspapers carried news of the theft on their front page, with pictures of the painting, "The Poppy Flower."
The museum is home to one of the Middle East's finest collections of 19th and 20th century art.
The collection also includes works assembled by Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil, a politician who died in 1953.
The minister for culture had earlier instructed security forces to take measures to ensure the painting did not leave the country.
It was unclear how the painting was stolen although the state news agency MENA had earlier said that security had tracked down visitors to the museum.
An Italian couple had been suspected after an employee spotted them visiting a bathroom then swiftly leaving.