Adolf Paulus was an art connoiseur and businessman. He married Anna Newpert-Watty who was from a family of Irish and Scottish descent.
Paulus came from a family of art collectors. He became a salesman and manager for a Munich importer.
He became business manager of Kunstlergenossenschaft, the largest professional exhibition society in Munich in 1871 at the age of 20. His dismissal from the Kunstlergenossenschaft in 1892 as a result of pressure from the Allgemeine Zeitung led to the foundation of the Munich Secession, a breakaway group founded in April 1892. As a businessman and close associate of Luitpold, Prince Regent of Bavaria, Paulus was in a powerful position to help to negotiate their 1893 show at Berlin.
Paulus, Adolf, 'Zwanzig Jahre Munchener Secession 1893-1913,' Die Kunst, vol. 27, 1912-1913, pp. 326-336; Makela, Maria, The Munich Secession, 1990