Gustav Klimt (1862-1918) was an Austrian symbolist painter and one of the most prominent figures of the Vienna Secession movement. He was born on July 14, 1862, in Baumgarten, near Vienna, Austria.

Klimt's art was characterized by a distinctive style that combined decorative elements, symbolism, and eroticism. He was heavily influenced by the Art Nouveau movement and often incorporated intricate patterns, flowing lines, and rich ornamentation into his works. Klimt's subjects ranged from landscapes and portraits to allegorical and mythological themes.

One of Klimt's most famous works is "The Kiss," a large-scale painting that has become an iconic symbol of love and sensuality. The piece exemplifies his use of gold leaf, decorative motifs, and highly stylized figures. Klimt's fascination with the female form is evident in many of his paintings, which often feature sensual and powerful women.

During his career, Klimt faced both praise and controversy for his artistic choices. He co-founded the Vienna Secession, a group of artists who sought to break away from traditional art institutions and establish a more modern and innovative artistic expression. Klimt served as the group's first president.

In addition to painting, Klimt also worked on various public commissions, including murals and ceiling paintings. Notable examples include his contributions to the Vienna Secession building and the University of Vienna's Great Hall.

Gustav Klimt's influence extended beyond his own lifetime. His work laid the foundation for later movements such as Art Deco and Art Nouveau. Today, his paintings are celebrated for their beauty, symbolism, and distinctive style. Klimt's art continues to captivate audiences worldwide, and his legacy as one of Austria's most important artists remains firmly established.