Ramona Handel-Bajema holds a Ph.D. in Modern Japanese History from Columbia University. She is currently the Chief Program Officer at Japan Society in New York City. Her recently published book, Art across Borders: Japanese Artists in the United States before World War II, explored how five artists – Kuniyoshi Yasuo, Ishigaki Eitarō, and Shimizu Toshi, Obata Chiura, and Miyatake Tōyō – navigated the modern American art world as Japanese nationals. In 2011, she moved to northeastern Japan, where she worked until 2015 as Americares Country Director, managing their disaster relief program following the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear meltdown. Ramona now has over ten years of experience working at non-profit organizations and social enterprises, while continuing to teach and write. Ramona has an avid interest in what constitutes national aesthetics and questions how western audiences understand Japanese art and culture. She teaches at Columbia University at the Committee on Global Thought a course on Art in Protest, an investigation of how artists use their art as a form of opposition. Her upcoming essay in an anthology published by Bloomsbury considers how and why Japanese artists embraced Mexican art following World War II.