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Jugendstil refers to an important and influential art and philosophical movement occurring roughly between 1890-1910 beginning in Europe and quickly spreading to the United States. Akin to Art Nouveau, the Jugendstil movement had its roots in Austria, Germany and Hungary, principally spawned by a group of artists associated with the Viennese Seccession Movement as well as the Wiener Werkstatte: Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser, Josef Hoffmann, Joseph Maria Olbrich, Carl Otto Czeschka, Josef Diveky, Anton Faistauer, Remigius Geyling, Heddi Hirsch, Emil Hoppe, Hans Kalmsteiner, Mela Koehler, Oskar Kokoschka, Rudolf Larisch, Maria Likarz, Berthold Loeffler, Moritz Jung, Editha Moser, Alfred Roller, Egon Schiele, and Ver Sacrum.

As the movement expanded into children's book illustration, many Austrian and German illustrators became identified with these innovative, highly decorative and finely produced children's books. The name, Jugendstil ("youth style"), was taken from the periodical "Jugend" which began to publish artists in this field such as: Heinrich Lefler, Joseph Urban, Hans Heinrich Christianson, Hugo Hoppner, Ernst Barlach, Peter Behrens, Julius Klinger, Heinrich Kley and a host of German and Austrian illustrators of children's books. Today, these books are highly prized, quite rare, and seldom found in collectible condition.