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Brushstrokes in Time

Weaving real events and Stars artists (including Ai WeiWei) with the fictional, this moving story shines a light on the internal workings of China and gives us an engaging heroine who rises above oppression to discover love, hope and success.

Frank Sieren, Asia Expert 

Brushstrokes in Time narrates a compelling story. Rooted in history, with richly

imagined settings and unforgettable characters, this novel presents a vivid picture of

what life was like in China during the Cultural Revolution.

Shrenik Rao, Editor, Madras Courier

Whether describing how students were ‘sent to the countryside’ in the Cultural

Revolution or how, after Mao died, young artists hung their experimental work outside

the national art gallery, Vetta is always accurate with a grasp of vivid detail.

John Gittings, The Guardian foreign corespondent

Moving but never mawkish... A deeply informed portrayal of the little-known but important Stars Arts Movement.

Prof Maria Jaschok, Oxford University

Brushstrokes in Time


Print ISBN:

Ebook ISBN:  



Print Length:

204 Pages





Available in paperback, ebook, audiobook and German translation

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This superbly researched and beautifully told fictional memoir is about love, art, and post-Mao China. It is directly inspired by the famous Stars Art movement.

Brushstrokes in Time is a fictional memoir by Chinese artist, Little Winter, who tries to re-establish the bond with her American daughter, telling the story of her emotional and rebellious past. 

While growing up in Communist China, Little Winter joins ‘The Stars’ art movement for freedom of speech in an era where self-expression and love was a dangerous act. Little Winter and her haunting love story connects us to a time of hope for freedom, and to a man frustrated by being kept in small shoes. 

Also by Sylvia Vetta

Learning German (badly)
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