Sunday in the Park With George begins in 1884, at the park, where Seurat is consumed with finishing his masterpiece. His model and mistress, Dot, struggles to make a connection with the emotionally unavailable, obsessed artist, and leaves him for the staunch baker, Louis. George continues to work on his masterpiece, arranging the rest of the cast (a myriad of characters including a famous painter, servants and even Seurat's mother) as figures in his composition.
In Act Two, we jump to 1984 where another George, the grandson of the daughter Dot bore to George in Act One, has been commissioned to create a piece of mechanical performance art to celebrate the 100th anniversary of his great-grandfather's painting. This present-day George, however, is at a creative impasse. After completing his seventh "chromolume," he has begun to question whether he is finished as an artist--that is, until he receives an unexpected visit from the ghost of his great-grandmother who has a special message for him.