"Life Cycle” is a 144-inch by 36-inch panel by Kweku Andrews of Ghana, Africa, the 1979-1980 Sheboygan community artist-in-residence. According to the artist, the panel relates three different ideas about life from birth to old age.
Panel One shows the life stage during which the baby becomes the center of the parents’ attention. Children are very important because they represent the future security of the family. The border decoration is a symbol of the security of the home; the pot of water represents the parents nursing the child; the plants are a symbol of a child who needs parents to grow.
Panel Two deals with the adolescent who leaves the home to start a new life. While the parents hate losing a child, they leave the child with advice, expecting the child to uphold the family dignity. The bent plant tied to a straight pole represents a child; the pole represents parents. The border design symbolizes the parental control over the family.
Panel Three portrays the last stage of life when children take care of their elderly parents. Children should support their elderly parents, just as the parents raised the child. The border design depicts human relations. The tree on the right represents the mature child with two cut branches: one a walking stick for the aged parents and the other to support the old house on the left. The old house represents the aged parents.