A Fylde artist and photographer has fulfilled her dream of opening her own studio - and now wants to put the focus on sharing it with others.
Maxine Da’Volls is aiming to make The Exhibitionist gallery in St Annes into a creative hub and is eager to hear from anyone with ideas about how they would like to make the most of the space.
Along with the main exhibition area, the gallery in St Andrew’s Road South contains The Black Hole photographic studio and The Workshop, intended to play host to small groups learning and developing new skills.
Mum-of-two Maxine, 32, has been thrilled with the positive reaction so far from visitors to the gallery and feels it is filling a gap in the Fylde cultural scene.
A former pupil of Heyhouses and Queen Mary Schools, Maxine earned a top grade in art at GCSE but then abandoned her A levels to go into full-time employment, mostly in the care sector.
She then gained a first-class degree in photography after returning to education at 27 – and she specialises in creating abstract images from paper and then photographing them.
“Opening The Exhibitionist has been a dream come true for me and there has been such a genuine positive response to the Gallery,” she said.
“It has been a very humbling experience. Each and every person who has been so kind as to walk through the door, look at my work and listen to me talk has been so supportive.
“I have lots of plans for the gallery but my main wish is that it is a creative hub for St Annes and the surrounding areas.
“The Exhibitionist gallery is available for rent, either wholly or in part, by artists, photographers and any other creative genre.
“The Black Hole Studio is a photographic studio, complete with studio flash lighting system and backdrops, while I am looking for people who would like to hold workshops from all creative genres and hope to be able to offer a diverse range of activities that will appeal to the local community.
“I am open to suggestions and ideas and always enjoy it when people come to see me, whether for a chat or to show me some work.
Opening times at The Exhibitionist are 10.30am to 3pm on Tuesdays and 10.30am to 5pm Wednesdays to Saturdays inclusive. Late night opening is planned for late November and throughout December and Maxine can be contacted there on (01253) 283550.