Erratic Drift

3 instructions for drifting in cities with rocks, stones, and silt

Alluvial Drift

Borrow some silt (mud) from the River Clyde. Dry the silt until it is a fine powder. Walk along the geological drift line marking the extent of the river’s alluvial plain, which lies underneath parts of the city centre. Sprinkle silt along the line as you walk.

Quarry Drift

Borrow a rock from the site of a former quarry on the outskirts of Glasgow. Walk with the rock to a building in the city where stone from the quarry was used in its construction.

Rolling Stone Drift

Find a stone on a street in Glasgow city centre. Ask the stone if it will play with you. Gently nudge or kick the stone along the street with your foot, observing where it goes and how it moves. Stop when the stone escapes.

Erratic Drift (Part 2) is a project by Minty Donald and Nick Millar, in collaboration with the rocks, stones, and silt of Glasgow, and with geomorphologists, Prof Paul Bishop and Prof Larissa Naylor; archaeologist, Ingrid Shearer; architect, Lizzie Smith; designer, Neil McGuire, and film maker and scholar, Dr Azadeh Emadi. Photographs are by Callum Rice, Minty Donald, and Nick Millar. The project is supported by Architecture Fringe 2021 and the Geological Society of Glasgow, and is presented as part of The Dear Green Bothy, a collaborative cultural programme from the University of Glasgow’s College of Arts showcasing creative and critical responses to climate emergency

Drifts take place throughout spring, summer, and autumn 2021. This website will be updated to include documentation of these drifts: an ongoing blog and 3 short films.


Photo credits: Callum Rice.