Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants

The program provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for recent unexpected medical, dental, and mental health emergencies.

New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) is proud to partner with the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation to administer a new emergency grant program called Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants. Robert Rauschenberg was committed to assisting fellow artists in need of emergency medical aid, ultimately establishing the nonprofit foundation Change, Inc. in 1970. In this spirit, this program is designed to serve artists in financial need who otherwise may delay critical treatment or incur substantial and perhaps overwhelming debt. And in this moment, we recognize the urgency of caring for and helping one another. While artists are famously self-sufficient, this is a time to ask for support when needed, and to offer support when possible.

The Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants program provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for unexpected medical, dental, and mental health emergencies experienced by artists in the past 6 months who are in financial need. The grants are available to visual and media artists and choreographers currently residing in the United States and who have limited resources.

This is a competitive grant opportunity; applications are reviewed based solely on the criterion of need. Please review our artistic discipline definitions to determine that you are eligible before applying. If you have questions, please contact the grants administrator.

This project is supported by the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation.

Please note: Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants are not for lost wages. Visit NYFA’s Emergency Grants page for a regularly-updated list of emergency resources.


For medical emergencies occurring between March 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021.

Application Opens: Monday, September 28, 2020 at 11:00 AM

Applications Close: Monday, October 26, 2020 at 11:59 PM


Cycle 5 application opens December 2, 2020; the deadline is January 5, 2021, for emergency treatment between May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021.


  • Open to visual and media artists and choreographers.
  • Open to artists who reside in the United States, District of Columbia, or U.S. Territories.
  • Open to artists whose adjusted gross annual income is $75,000 or lower for an individual, or $150,000 for joint filers, averaged over the last two federal tax returns.
  • The emergency must have occurred March 1, 2020 or later.
  • Applicants must demonstrate current and ongoing activity in artistic discipline/s.
  • Applicants cannot be enrolled in any degree-seeking program.
  • Eligible expenses include, but are not limited to: hospital and doctor bills (including insurance co-pays), tests, physical/occupational therapy, prescription drugs specifically for the emergency medical condition, and emergency dental work.
  • Artists of color, artists with disabilities, and those living outside of the East and West coasts are encouraged to apply.


All questions should be directed to [email protected]. Inquiries to the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation will be forwarded directly to NYFA.

Image Credit: Robert Rauschenberg in front of his Vydock series photographed in Rauschenberg’s Laika Lane studio, Captiva, FL, 1995, Photo Credit: Ed Chappell, Copyright: Robert Rauschenberg Foundation