Gustav Klimt (July 14, 1862 - February 6, 1918) was an Austrian Symbolist painter who became known for the highly decorative and erotic nature of his works. He was a prominent member of the Viennese Art Nouveau Movement and a leader of the The Vienna Secession, which broke with the traditional academic art of his era.

Although Klimt was a Symbolist, his primary subject was the female body, and his works are marked by a frank eroticism. Much of his work was controversial due to an exotic and blatantly erotic imagery in an era of conservative formality.  

His work was not widely accepted during his lifetime, but he was seen as an artist who was far ahead of his time, and one of the most important and influential artists to come out of Austria in the 20th century.