Senate Bill No. 55 was passed in South Dakota on March 29, 2019, stating that all public schools in the state must display the United States national motto “In God We Trust” in a highly visible location. Renowned street art artist ShenShen210 was commissioned by International Fine Art Fund to create a mural at Todd County High School over Labor Day Weekend. This location is on the Rosebud Reservation, home of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe. This artwork embraces our national motto.
Shen partnered with IFAF and White Horse Ministries, the reservation’s Christian organization created and led by Tribal members, to honor the message of “In God We Trust” in the community’s cultural context. She studied photographs of First Nations chiefs and characteristics of the local landscape. While driving through South Dakota Shen took note of the grain resources, as well as the acres of sunflowers, which inspired her to include them in the mural. The white horses are symbols of power and beauty. The school mascot, the falcon, is also included in the design. This composition is meant to inspire students to acknowledge the beauty with which God created their people and to inspire them to honor their heritage.