Highpoint Center for Printmaking co-founder and master printer Cole Rogers will step down, after more than 20 years of working alongside his wife Carla McGrath, Highpoint's former executive director and fellow co-founder.
"Just about every goal that Carla and I set out to hit has been accomplished," Rogers said. "And at some point you figure, well, we've done everything that we had set out to do, and I still have things that I want to do."
McGrath stepped down in November 2021, a month after the Minneapolis Institute of Art acquired the complete archive of Highpoint Editions and opened the exhibition, "The Contemporary Print: 20 Years at Highpoint Editions."
Highpoint's new executive director Jehra Patrick, who came to the nonprofit from Macalester College's Law Warschaw Gallery and the Emerging Curators Institute, started Aug. 1.
During his 20-plus years at Highpoint Center for Printmaking, Rogers has worked alongside internationally acclaimed artists such as Julie Mehretu, Dyani White Hawk, Julie Buffalohead and Willie Cole, nurturing artists' potential.
Because Highpoint was started as a nonprofit, the mission was always to have a board of directors, and it would be the board's duty to carry the mission forward.
"There was always the vision that someone else would take it over one day," said Rogers, an Alabama native who has lived in the Twin Cities for decades.
What's next for Rogers sounds like a combination of artmaking and working with others, just not under the tight 9-to-5 schedule of Highpoint. For now, he's certain he'll be out riding his bike more. Last week, he was at EXPO Chicago with Highpoint, and he recently gave a talk in Texas at a museum.
"I've been making prints for, boy, if you include school, close to 40 years," he said. "I've been doing this professionally for 35 in one way or another, so I don't see that I'm going to go cold turkey. I am definitely going to continue making prints in different ways and artwork and finding different ways to stay involved."
Highpoint is forming a search committee to begin looking for the center's next master printer.