20 years of Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation

Simmons Brothers celebrate 20 years of the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation.

Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation was founded in 1995 in New York City by media mogul Russell Simmons and his brothers, artist and activist Danny Simmons and Joseph “Rev. Run” Simmons of Run-DMC fame. From its beginning, the Rush mission was committed to bettering the lives of underserved inner-city youth through meaningful exposure to the arts and hands-on education programs, and to providing professional support to artists at the beginning of their careers, mostly artists of color.

In nurturing the careers of artists that are frequently marginalized and underrepresented, our belief is that a more diverse, socially conscious art world that represents more points of view is stronger and can influence the broader culture. Rush’s rich exhibition history includes nearly 2,000 artists, including pivotal early exhibitions by Kehinde Wiley, Wangechi Mutu, Simone Leigh, Hank Willis Thomas, Dread Scott, Sanford Biggers, Renee Cox and many more. All of these artists continue to be part of the Rush family of supporters.

Yesterday the 2015 ART FOR LIFE benefit honored Dave Chappelle, Michaela and Simon de Pury, Ava DuVernay, and featured artist Wangechi Mutu for their career achievements, and overall commitment to our communities.

The 16th annual gala was attended by many artists and philanthropists, dressed in roaring twenties attire to celebrate this 20th anniversary.

I think it’s our responsibility as we continue to be successful we also have to respect the fact that we all got here by somebody helping us, somebody pulling us up. And rush philanthropic is always giving an opportunity for people to learn and love the arts. Russell taught me how to live but he also taught me how to give. And being able to give back to Rush philanthropic is a blessing to my family and a blessing to all those who come to support them on this event.”–Kevin Liles

“Art saves lives, it is that simple,” asserts Co-Founder Russell Simmons.



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