Anton Kolig is one of Carinthia's most important representatives of expressionism. When, at the outbreak of WW I, the avant-garde artists abandoned the big cities for the countryside, an enclave of artists developed in the small town of Nötsch in the Gailtal valley, the so-called Nötscher Kreis (Nötsch Circle). This group of artists developed a regional variation of expressionism. Anton Kolig ranks among the major protagonists of this art circle. Kolig created the majority of his works in the Gailtal.
Central to Kolig's works is the male nude. His wistful drawings of young men are full of power and tenderness. His nudes and self-portraits are coded psychological studies expressing mythologized emotional and mental states. When the Nazi regime started banning modern art in favor of Heroic Art, Kolig's frescoes in the Carinthian Landhaushof were destroyed as "degenerate art".