September 26 - November 27 2023

Lakota Landscapes

The photography of Galen LaRoche (Chris Bordeaux) offers a unique perspective into the landscapes of the Great Plains. An enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, he currently lives with his wife in the Red Cloud Community on the Pine Ridge Reservation. A lifelong educator, Galen currently serves as the Interim Director of the Pine Ridge Girls School and has previously worked as both a teacher and principal. He holds a B.S in Elementary Education from Black Hills State College and a M.A. in Educational Administration from Oglala Lakota College.

Galen was drawn to photography at an early age and recalls when his family acquired its first polaroid camera for Christmas while he was in elementary school. He promptly appropriated the camera to photograph his toy cars and thus began his passion for photography. In his early career, Galen gained decades of experience in film photography, photo development and printing, and learned critical skills in framing shots and capturing fleeting action. These skills have continued to serve him well as he has transitioned into the world of digital photography.

With his Canon DSLR camera always nearby, Galen takes photographs spontaneously as he drives across the landscapes of South Dakota and surrounding states. When he comes across a scene he wants to photograph, he takes anywhere from 6-12 overlapping images. He then uses simple photography software to stich the image together and blend the component images together. Once the various component images have been stitched together, he manipulates the colors of the photograph using basic software. Clouds and landscapes play a prominent role in many of his photos, evoking past photographers who have influenced Galen such as Ansel Adams and Edward Curtis. He sees his landscapes as an expression of the connection between Lakotas and Mother Earth, and the unique perspective that Lakotas have on the natural world.

Galen has participated in, and won awards from numerous art shows including: the Red Cloud Art Show, Pine Ridge, SD, Crazy Horse Memorial’s Gifts from Mother Earth Art Show, Custer, SD, Native POP, Rapid City, SD, and the Northern Plains Indian Art Market in Sioux Fall, SD. His work has been displayed in the Racing Magpie Native Art Gallery in Rapid City, SD, the Post Pilgrim Art Gallery in Sioux Falls, SD, and We Are the Seeds Gallery in Santa Fe, NM.

Prices for the artwork can be obtained by contacting The Journey Museum store at (605) 394-2201. To purchase artwork after the exhibit closes, please contact Galen LaRoche at

June 16 - August 27 2023

Doll Revolution

Lakota artist Gene Swallow creates unique dolls and textile arts that build on centuries of tradition. An enrolled member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, his work continues a long line of work with fibers and textiles among Lakota people. Dolls were once used as both toys and instructional tools. Mothers used the process of doll making to teach their daughters the skills needed in the matriarchal Lakota society. Gene continues these traditions by making functional toy dolls, but also forges a new path with his uniquely modern hybrid dolls that include both human and animal elements.

He holds a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education from Oglala Lakota College and spent a decade working with the Rapid City Area School District and Oglala Lakota County implementing the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings, a curriculum focused of Lakota history and culture. Currently he works for NDN Collective as a Front Desk Executive.

As a child, Gene frequently played with both dolls and action figures, immersing himself in a playful make-believe world. His current artwork builds on his childhood and his dolls are both whimsical and fantastical. Lakota artists Duane Wilcox and Jennifer White have both mentored and inspired Gene. The figures in Duane’s ledger art are expressive and comical while being relatively simple in form, a style Gene tries to emulate in his own work. Jennifer’s use of bold color in her portraiture led Gene to pursue a similar use of vivid fabrics and patterns in his dollmaking.

Nature provides inspiration for much of Gene’s work, and he uses natural fibers and materials as much as possible. Although he gravitates toward earth tones in many of his dolls, he also uses colors selectively to enhance his dolls. Gene learned to sew by both hand and machine from his mother, who was an accomplished quilter and seamstress. When he makes his own dolls, he first begins with a vision of the shape and silhouette. Some of the dolls have a more traditional stout form, while others are elongated and slender. The fabric and materials he has available then dictate how the final form of the doll takes shape as Gene experiments with the properties of each unique fabric, many of which are historic fabrics he recycles from other sources.

Gene’s work represents his own Lakota identity and sense of self. It is both ancient and modern, reflecting the balance that many Native Americans seek to achieve as they preserve their cultures in the modern age. Many of his dolls blend animal and human forms together, a reference to the connections between Lakotas and their four legged and winged relatives in the animal world. Gene uses elements such as horns and braided hair on his figures to give them a Lakota identity, without including more traditional elements such as beadwork decoration.

Gene’s work has been included in exhibits at the Red Cloud Heritage Center, Pine Ridge, SD, and the Dahl Fine Arts Center, Rapid City, SD. He was also awarded Best of Division III: Three-Dimensional Award in the 2021 Native POP Art Show, Rapid City, SD ,and received a First Peoples Fund Artist in Business Leadership Fellowship in 2021. This exhibit will mark his first solo exhibition.

Prices for the artwork can be obtained by contacting The Journey Museum store at (605) 394-2201. To purchase artwork after the exhibit closes, please contact Gene Swallow at

March 3 - June 11 2023

Strong Heart Woman

Sheridan MacKnight is a gifted artist who uses bold colors and strong lines to create visual stories reflecting the resilience of Native American women. She is an enrolled member of the White Earth Nation and is a descendent of the Hunkpapa Lakota Oyate from Standing Rock, South Dakota. She currently resides in both Santa Fe, New Mexico and Rancho Palos Verdes, California.

Raised in southern California, Sheridan was deeply inspired by both her mother Frances, and her aunt, Patricia Locke. She spent many summers on her family’s land at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, an experience that would profoundly influence her as both a person and an artist. She attended Art Center College of Design in California with the intention of becoming an industrial designer but quickly gravitated towards illustration and graphic design. With the encouragement of her artistic mentor, Michael Fast Horse, she began to explore the realm of ledger art, with a woman’s perspective.

Her work is a form of delicate storytelling with ink and paint, seen through a Native American lens of color, which results in graphically clean paintings. She is fascinated by both strong lines and composition and seeks to convey feelings of comfort and ease through her art. Through her art, she tells a story of resilience, which draws strength through historic photographs and ledger art, to champion Native American women and children. Eva Flying Earth, Sheridan’s Hunkpapa Lakota grandmother, is a central figure in many of her compositions. She also draws inspiration from the Plains and Pueblo artists of the 20th century, particularly those who studied under Dorothy Dunn at the Santa Fe Indian School from the 1920s through the 1940s.

Sheridan has earned multiple awards for her work including First Place in the 2-Dimensional Art category at the 2018 Heard Guild Indian Fair and Market, Phoenix, Arizona, and First Place in the Paintings, Drawings, and Graphics category at the 2018 SWAI Santa Fe Indian Market, Santa Fe, New Mexico. The Museum of Contemporary Native Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth, New Hampshire, and Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, hold Sheridan’s work in their collections.

Prices for the artwork can be obtained by contacting The Journey Museum store at (605) 394-2201. To purchase artwork after the exhibit closes, please contact Sheridan MacKnight at this link 

The Journey Museum and Learning Center regularly adds new events, exhibits, and features to the expansive museum, covering American history, Black Hills history, and Native American culture.

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The Journey Museum and Learning Center is one of the more unique museums to experience not only the history of the Black Hills but Native American culture.



The Journey Museum and Learning Center functions as a nonprofit thanks to the generous donations of our supporters and sponsors.

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The Journey Museum is currently in Winter Hours:

Winter Hours

(October 1st – April 30th)
10 AM – 5 PM Monday through Saturday
1 PM – 5 PM Sundays

Summer Hours

(May 1st – September 30th)
9 AM – 6 PM Monday through Saturday
11 AM – 5 PM Sundays


All individual admissions are good for two days with receipt.

Museum General Admission:

Adults (ages 18+) $10
Seniors (ages 62+) $8
Students (ages 6 – 17) $7
Children 5 & under FREE with family

Groups (10+ people):

$7 per person

Tour guides available. Please call (605) 394-6923 one week prior to visit to schedule.

Education Groups (12+ students):

$3 per student (all students 18 and under)
$5 College Students

Chaperones are requested. Special pricing will be extended to adult chaperones.

Tour guides available. Please call (605) 394-6923 one week prior to visit to schedule.