Founder & Artistic Director
Pentimenti founder and Artistic Director Leslie Buchbinder began her career as a professional dancer with companies in Chicago and San Francisco, prior to working as an Account Executive in the arts public relations firm, The Kreisberg Group, (New York City). Ms. Buchbinder thereafter established her own arts communications company in Chicago. For over ten years, LB-PR specialized in local & international communications for clients including Sara Lee Corporation, (sponsor of a series of art museum exhibitions); The Art Institute of Chicago; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; The Arts Club of Chicago; among many others. In 2011, she was nominated to the Committee on Prints and Drawings of The Art Institute of Chicago, & to the Advisory Board of the Chicago Film Archives in 2012. Hairy Who & The Chicago Imagists is her film directorial debut.
Harrison Sherrod is a writer, curator, & educator from Chicago, IL. As Executive Director, Harrison oversees Pentimenti’s day-to-day operations, including coordinating PR/marketing and development efforts, spearheading film distribution and exhibition strategies, and managing all financial matters. Additionally, he is eager to leverage his curatorial skill set to forge new institutional partnerships that will result in dynamic public programming and educational initiatives. Apart from his Pentimenti duties, Harrison regularly facilitates seminars at the Newberry Library, including a class on Chicago surrealism. Since 2012 he has been a programmer with South Side Projections, a nonprofit organization that presents unique film screenings at locations across Chicago’s south side, and has curated programs on analog video art, avant-garde horror, and Red Grooms. Harrison has worked for the University of Chicago, Chicago Humanities Festival, Rebuild Foundation, as well as many other local arts organizations in myriad capacities, and brings to Pentimenti extensive experience in arts and academic administration.
Brian Ashby studied international relations at the University of Chicago, and came to documentary filmmaking through his interest in social issues surrounding political economy.
Spending four years on his first film, Scrappers (2010), established his commitment to making socially engaged and formally exploratory work. In These Times called the film “a moving portrait of the precariousness of life and work at the bottom of the American economy, in one of the country’s wealthiest cities.” Detouring into the history of the visual arts, Brian co-produced Hairy Who & the Chicago Imagists (Pentimenti Productions, 2014), which has screened widely at venues including the Liverpool Biennial, the New Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. He co-directed the SFG/WTTW11 web series Central Standard: On Education, examining disparities in public education in Chicagoland, and is currently co-producing and co-editing The Area, a documentary feature following the displacement of a Chicago neighborhood by an intermodal freight yard. Projects produced by Brian have been supported by the Andy Warhol Foundation, PBS Digital Studios, the Northern Ireland Community Relations Council, the Driehaus Foundation, and others.
Brian alternates between work as a producer, cinematographer, and editor, and values collaboration above all.
For over 10 years, Ben Kolak has worked as a cinematographer, editor, producer, and director. He enjoys collaborating with small teams on projects designed to encourage social good. Ben’s work has appeared in The New York Times, NPR, PBS, Univision, Al-Jazeera, Vice, Fusion, Euronews, and Netflix. In addition, he has shot and edited strategic videos for clients including The University of Chicago, Code for America, Chicago Humanities Festival and The Joyce Foundation. He also frequently collaborates with contemporary artists on moving image projects.
Ben began making films while studying philosophy and cinema at the University of Chicago, where he wrote a thesis under the direction of Frankfurt School expert Miriam Hansen. His directorial debut, Scrappers (2010), went on to win awards at numerous festivals and make critic Roger Ebert’s list of the top documentaries for 2010. Ben edited the documentary Hairy Who and the Chicago Imagists (2014 Newport Beach Film Festival), and co-directed the web series Central Standard: On Education, made in partnership with WTTW 11 and PBS Digital Studios (2014). In 2015, Ben crafted a season of 360°/VR documentaries for Chicago news site Gapers Block. He is currently in production on numerous web series, strategic projects, and documentaries.
Ben lives in Hyde Park with his wife, Akemi Hong, their son, and a corgi. He enjoys basketball and camping. Ben is a member of The Arts Club of Chicago and a board member of the Media Burn Video Archive.