How can I get a vector outline of the inside of a complex shape?

I have a shape thus:

enter image description here

In Illustrator, this design is composed of a load of paths with a heavy stroke applied, and no fill. How can I obtain the path describing the white area?

Note: I drew this in Illustrator but coloured it in Photoshop for clarity

Answer

Use Object > Expand to turn the paths into fills, then use Pathfinder operations as required to produce a single shape for the white area.

Attribution
Source : Link , Question Author : fredley , Answer Author : e100

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