Film prikazuje zgodbo slikarja Pabla Picassa in njegovo ljubezensko zvezo z mlado slikarko Francoise. Naslovnega junaka je odlično upodobil Anthony Hopkins. Romanca med Picassom in Francoise se začne leta 1943 z nemško okupacijo Pariza. Čeprav slikar dekletu obljubi večno ljubezen, v njegovem življenju ne manjka drugih žensk. Francoise mora kot del razmerja s Picassom sprejeti vse njegove ženske in potomce, tako kot tudi druge, velikokrat zelo neprijetne vidike njegove osebnosti. V razmerju se jima rodita dva otroka, a se zaradi drugih žensk in njegovega nemogočega temperamenta znajdeta pred težko preizkušnjo.
In 1943, a young painter, Françoise Gilot (1921- ) meets Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), already the most celebrated artist in the world. For the next ten years, she is his mistress, bears him two children, is his muse, and paints within his element. She also learns slowly about the other women who have been or still are in his life: Dora Maar, Marie- Thérèse (whose daughter is Picasso's), and Olga Koklowa, each of whom seems deeply scarred by their life with Picasso. Gilot's response is to bring each into her relationship with Picasso. How does one survive Picasso? She keeps painting, and she keeps her good humor and her independence. When the time comes, she has the strength to leave.