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Meet Tslil Tsemet of Tslil Tsemet Artwork in Downtown

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tslil Tsemet.

Tslil, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I started painting in my early childhood (probably when I was 2-3 years old). I was born in Nahariya- a small town in north Israel, part of my family is super religious (my sister got 10 kids), I ditched the military services and went lived in tel aviv and Jerusalem for 8 years. I was doing a b.f.a at bezalel academy of art in Jerusalem. That city and the major chaotic conflict it contains had a lot of impact of my point of view and on my artwork. All the different religions races and genders was and still is a big topic in my art. Since my work is pretty provocative and contains a lot of nudity and other taboos I was dealing with a lot of censorship, and my professors advised me many times to go to the west coast or to Germany, but Germany was cold and I don’t speak the language. So I came here. I was wondering around the bay area for a while and landed in L.A by accident. 3.5 years later and I’m still not sure about this place. But I’m giving it some more time.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The main struggle for many years was supporting myself as an artist while still finding the time to create artwork, but then I became a professional tattooer what made that part much easier (plz contact me for tattoos at @ink.by.tslil) after that is was (and still is) the search after my place in a new country-cities-ppl-culture-language, and the right place in the local art scene. Oh and also the fact that my work keep being censored out of shows and out of social media, but that’s boring.

Please tell us about Tslil Tsemet Artwork.
I do a lot of very big paintings usually 60*60inches, usually I use my friends as my models, but I also ask strangers sometimes. I make art that is not there just to be pretty and decorative, it’s there to challenge the brains and souls of the viewers in a very personal and intimate ways, and therefore many people find it disturbing or scary, while others really love it. I use a lot of humor in my work, since I really believe art is a form of healing, not only to the maker- to the viewers as well, and humor is a great way to help us to release around topics that are not funny. The things I am the most proud of is my artistic involving and growth, it isn’t the smoothest journey but experiences leads to inspirations. There are still many areas that I want to learn and improve in, but I’m happy about the way my body of work is involving so far. What set me apart from others is the subject matter mainly, when I am asked to draw something that I don’t find meaning in I am incapable to draw one line.

Do you feel like our city is a good place for businesses like yours? If someone was just starting out, would you recommend them starting out here? If not, what can our city do to improve?
I’m also asking myself this question pretty often. So I can’t say at the moment. I guess it would be nice if the city was more open of having respectful platforms for things that might be categories as different or avangard and less commercial.

Contact Info:


Image Credit:

All images were taken by Tslil Tsemet
The first image of me standing in my studio was taken by Eric Minth Swensen

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