In the space between subject and object, the I-figure engages the spirit, senses and mind. Stripped of expressive content yet embedded with symbolism and narrative, the I-frame remains open to each person's understanding and perceptions of absence and presence, Other and Self. On each encounter, the artwork looks back like a subliminal mirror of I/One, an affirmation which reshapes the subjective through an objective lens.
The abstract figure's purpose and values shift across cultures and paradigms. In creation stories and ancient knowledge systems, totem-like figures relay spirits and ancestors, manifesting also as first-forms. In geo-politics, the first person pronoun is a symbol of agency and humanity, a fundamental platform of human rights. As a Roman numeral meaning One or First, 'I'' commences a sequence, asserts primacy, origins and identity. In philosophy and psychology the I-subject evokes the conscious and subconscious in both human and spirit realms. Its imprint changes across languages such as te reo Māori where 'I' connects the spoken word with the past tense, and in Asian languages where it makes the sound for 'love'.