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Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation (or Rush Arts) was founded in 1995 by three brothers: media mogul Russell Simmons, artist and activist Danny Simmons and Joseph “Rev. Run” Simmons of the legendary hip-hop group Run-DMC. Their goal was to overcome the barriers that the disenfranchised and people of color faced in accessing New York’s rich arts and culture resources.
The Rush mission continues today with a vibrant range of programs that include diverse arts education programs in New York and New Jersey, that use contemporary art to build resilience, academic skills and self-expression in underserved youth, aged 2-20. We provide year-long Teaching Artist residencies in partner public schools, where we install a gallery to display student artwork; hands-on art-making projects for kids on weekends and in the summer; and portfolio development classes for teens. Rush maintains two professional galleries, one in Manhattan and the other in Brooklyn, that provide career support, exhibition opportunities and residencies to underrepresented artists and curators, notably artists of color. We also seek to provide public events and a supportive environment for underserved communities to experience contemporary art, all with the goal of making the art world more diverse and inclusive.