Study on how to cut an A4 paper by hand


March 17, 2021

I need to write something down. I find an A4 printing paper that seems too big for the occasion, so I decide to cut it by hand, trying to keep the new side as straight as possible.

I fold the paper and I press it with my fingernail, along its entire length. I rest my palm on the paper and I try to tear it with my other hand, pulling the remaining piece little by little. The paper is cut quite successfully. The new side is sufficiently straight, but its texture and shape is different compared to the others. Ι now have a piece with three well-groomed sides and a new rougher one.

I realize that the objective in both cases was the same, for the machine and the people who handled it before I got it, and also for me now: How to cut the paper straight. Same request, different methodologies and means, at different moments of time, translated into forms that coexist on the same piece of paper. 

There are many ways to cut an A4 paper by hand. Keeping at least one of its pre-existing sides already formed in the past, is maybe a choice of allowing different times to embed in it. It is a choice of recognizing creation as a slow act that lets things meet, interact and unite over time.