克利于1879年12月18日出生于瑞士慕尼黑布赫，瑞士母亲和德国父亲，两人都是音乐家。他在瑞士伯尔尼长大，在那里他的父亲被转移到伯尔尼音乐会管弦乐队的指挥。克利是一个足够但不过分热情的学生。他对希腊语的研究特别感兴趣，并且在他的一生中继续用原始语言阅读希腊诗歌。他是全面的，但他对艺术和音乐的热爱显而易见。他不断画画 – 十本速写本从他的童年中幸存下来 – 并且还继续演奏音乐，即使是在伯尔尼市政交响乐团中也是如此。基于他的广泛教育，克利可以进入任何职业，但选择成为一名艺术家，因为，正如他在20世纪20年代所说，“它似乎落后了，他觉得也许他可以帮助推进它。”他成为了一位非常有影响力的画家，绘图员，版画家和美术老师。然而，他对音乐的热爱继续对他独特而独特的艺术产生终身影响。 Klee于1898年前往慕尼黑，在私人Knirr艺术学校学习，与Erwin Knirr一起工作，他非常热衷于让Klee成为他的学生，并在当时表达了“如果Klee坚持结果可能是非凡的”。 Klee在Knirr学习绘画和绘画，然后在慕尼黑学院学习Franz Stuck。 1901年6月，在慕尼黑学习了三年后，克利前往意大利，在那里他大部分时间都在罗马度过。在那段时间之后，他于1902年5月回到伯尔尼去消化他在旅途中所吸收的东西。他一直呆在那里直到1906年结婚，在此期间，他制作了许多蚀刻片，引起了一些注意。
Klee was born in Münchenbuchsee, Switzerland on December 18, 1879, to a Swiss mother and a German father, both of whom were accomplished musicians. He grew up in Bern, Switzerland, where his father had been transferred to work as the conductor of the Bern concert orchestra. Klee was an adequate, but not overly enthusiastic student. He was particularly interested in his study of Greek and continued to read Greek poetry in the original language throughout his life. He was well-rounded, but his love of art and music were clearly evident. He drew constantly — ten sketchbooks survive from his childhood — and also continued to play music, even as an extra in the Municipal Orchestra of Bern. Based on his broad education, Klee could have gone into any profession, but chose to become an artist because, as he said in the 1920s, “it seemed to be lagging behind and he felt that perhaps he could help to advance it.” He became a very influential painter, draughtsman, printmaker, and art teacher. However, his love of music continued to have a lifelong influence on his unique and idiosyncratic art. Klee went to Munich in 1898 to study at the private Knirr Art School, working with Erwin Knirr, who was very enthusiastic about having Klee as his student, and expressed the opinion at the time that “if Klee persevered the result might be extraordinary.” Klee studied drawing and painting with Knirr and then with Franz Stuck at the Munich Academy. In June of 1901, after three years of study in Munich, Klee traveled to Italy where he spent most of his time in Rome. After that time he returned to Bern in May of 1902 to digest what he had absorbed in his travels. He stayed there until his marriage in 1906, during which time he produced a number of etchings which garnered some attention.