Local Artist Paul Brent reacts to the loss of his gallery.

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - For more than 25 years, locals used the Paul Brent art gallery to buy, create and learn about art.

Local artist Paul Brent is looking to find a way to move forward after a fire on Thursday destroyed his gallery. (WJHG/WECP)

However, after the building caught fire Thursday, it's now a place filled with rubble and memories.

"It has already been destroyed by the Hurricane and then it's totally destroyed by fire now. It's very difficult to comprehend,” said Brent.

Brent said they were repairing the building following the hurricane.

"We were working with a contractor and that contractor was rebuilding the building for us. We were planning on being back in by February and March,” said Brent.

The fire stopped those plans. Brent said none of his artwork was in the building at the time of the fire and he plans to work with his insurance company moving forward.

"At some point, I'll start re-showing that work, in our community. I don't know exactly how now it's hard to think about exactly what I’m going to do,” said Brent.

Brent said he still doesn't know what caused the fire or how much money it'll cost to rebuild his gallery but he does know he will continue his work.

“My plan is to still be an artist,” said Brent.

Brent said they'll begin tearing down what remains of his gallery Saturday. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help Brent. He said he was not behind setting up the account, but says he does appreciate the help.

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