David Evans takes upcycling to the next level
When Cheatham County resident David “Dave” Evans looks at the used car parts spread across what’s left of his father’s former salvage yard, he doesn’t see items that have lost their usefulness. Rather he sees beautiful works of art waiting to be born.
Alex “Poochie” Evans owned Evans Auto Salvage on Veterans Road in Ashland City since 1968. When Poochie died in 2015, he left it to his son, who closed it, but has taken many of those pieces of salvage and transformed them into an art form called bricolage.
Bricolage is defined as art created from things that happen to be lying around or art made from mixed media.
Dave said he’d always liked doing artwork and incorporating car parts into his work. It’s something his father did, making sculptures from metal. It’s something his father encouraged him to do, saving car parts for him to get creative with. And it’s something that Dave encourages his son Mason to do. Dave said Mason helps with the artwork and does his own 3-D drawings.
Dave likes to look at something that others call junk and see the possibilities for it, like the 1940s Ford Cheatham County school bus sitting across the street from his childhood home, which then became the office for the salvage yard. Dave said the bus has been there since the 1970s and was drivable when it arrived. Poochie used it as storage, but Dave hopes to one day make a yard ornament out of it or a clubhouse for his future grandchildren.
“I’ll be walking and see something and think, ‘That’ll make a great table.’ I may not do it immediately, but I always know exactly what to do with it. I make something out of trash.
“With the old car parts, I’ve got some from the 1930s. It’s just beautiful the way it’s faceted and shaped. I’d rather make something out of them than throw them in a bin.
“When I see something, some see it as trash, but I see it as something I can make something beautiful out of it, something someone would think would really look great in their home,” Dave said.