Daring to Dream: Moving to Mallorca

Accomplished artist Max Patté embraced the challenges of relocating from New Zealand to Mallorca

Art by Max Patté

Leaving their thriving careers and an idyllic home in New Zealand to embark on a bold adventure to Mallorca was a gamble for Amy and Max, but the stars eventually aligned in their favour.

The couple’s desire to relocate to Mallorca was spurred by a combination of Max’s artistic ambitions and a longing to reconnect with their families, with Amy originally hailing from Cork, Ireland, and Max from Gloucestershire, England. The fantastic weather certainly didn’t hurt either. “We wanted that good weather that brings that change of lifestyle,” Amy recounts. Max adds with a laugh, “She threatened to divorce me if she had to endure the southerly wind in Wellington any longer!”.

A Leap of Faith

Given Max’s successful trajectory as an artist in New Zealand, it was a bold step. Heading to Europe meant leaving behind a thriving collectorship in New Zealand and Australia, and the couple’s journey to the Mediterranean was indeed not without its challenges. After enduring multiple failed attempts to purchase property – initially on Ibiza, the pandemic forced them to remain in New Zealand for an additional three years. However, Max found an unexpected silver lining. As travel restrictions kept people at home, in the southern hemisphere, they began investing in art and cars, leading to a surge in Max’s art sales. “I sold four times as much art in the first year of COVID as I had done the previous year,” Max says, reflecting on the unforeseen boon to his career.

With newfound momentum and a new focus on Mallorca, the couple ventured into the real estate market once again, setting their sights on the picturesque village of Alaró. They were drawn to the area’s blend of local charm and expatriate community and the prospect of enrolling their two children at the Montessori school nearby in Santa Maria. After securing the perfect Alaró townhouse online, the next step was to find the perfect space for Max’s studio. A place that would not only house the heavy machinery needed for his sculptures and infinity lightworks but also serve as a stylish exhibition space. They encountered numerous roadblocks but persevered in their search for the ideal location. Eventually, they discovered a commercial space in Santa Maria, which, with time and effort, will be transformed into Max’s dream studio.

Making Connections

A fortuitous discovery while browsing abcMallorca’s website further aided their presence in Mallorca’s art scene. “I was reading an article on Alaró and saw a hyperlink to Gallery Red,” Max recalls. A simple click led him to major art collector, Drew Aaron, who coincidentally also lived in Alaró. With a quick email and a Zoom call, Drew offered Max representation at his esteemed gallery. Some of Max’s work, transported from New Zealand, found immediate success in the gallery’s window and his first solo exhibition drew enthusiastic local support.

After 18 months on the island, Amy and Max are settling into a more relaxed lifestyle in Mallorca, valuing the island’s slower pace and the opportunity to savour life’s small pleasures outside of their busy work schedules. Max emphasizes, “I think the antidote to a busy professional life is how you can slow down outside of your work hours. Everybody’s busy, right? It’s what you do outside of that that helps you find the magic.”

Amy and Max’s move from New Zealand to Mallorca was not without its trials, but their determination, passion, and the support of their new local community have made it all worthwhile. Mallorca, with its vibrant art scene and welcoming atmosphere, has become the ideal canvas for Amy and Max to paint their dreams into a vivid reality.

Text by Ché Miller | Photos by Sara Savage 

Address details

Gallery Red

Plaça Frederic Chopin, Palma