Hundreds Attend ‘Armenia: An Open Wound’ Exhibition Opening Ceremony

Armenian American Museum governing board co-chairs Primate Hovnan Derderian and Prelate Moushegh Mardirossian along with City of Glendale Mayor Devine and Sonia Arakelian
Armenian American Museum governing board co-chairs Primate Hovnan Derderian and Prelate Moushegh Mardirossian along with City of Glendale Mayor Devine and Sonia Arakelian

Armenian American Museum governing board co-chairs Primate Hovnan Derderian and Prelate Moushegh Mardirossian along with City of Glendale Mayor Devine and Sonia Arakelian

GLENDALE – On Saturday, April 16, hundreds of public officials, dignitaries, clergy, and community members gathered for the “Armenia: An Open Wound” Exhibition Opening Ceremony at Brand Library & Art Center in the City of Glendale. The Opening Ceremony was the public’s first opportunity to experience the moving exhibition on the history and culture of the Armenian people.

The event began with formal remarks by Zaven Kazazian on behalf of the Armenian American Museum, welcoming the capacity crowd to the Brand Library. Primate Hovnan Derderian and Prelate Moushegh Mardirossian, Co-Chairs of the Armenian American Museum Governing Board, opened the program with a prayer and shared their vision for the future of the Armenian American Museum in the heart of Downtown Glendale.

“I express my special appreciation and gratitude to the Armenian American Museum executive committee chaired by Mr. Berdj Karapetian for their diligent work, and especially acknowledge the presence of Mrs. Sonia Arakelian who has been instrumental in the creation of this exhibition” stated Primate Derderian. “Every Armenian, young and old must visit the exhibition and bring along a non-Armenian friend to share with them not only the harsh lessons of our history, but above all to learn about the resilience of our nation.”

Armenian American Museum executive committee organizers; Brand Library & Art Center staff; and Museo Memoria y Tolerancia representatives

Armenian American Museum executive committee organizers; Brand Library & Art Center staff; and Museo Memoria y Tolerancia representatives

Prelate Mardirossian expressed the importance of continuous commemoration for the 1915 Armenian Genocide and the important role the “Armenia: An Open Wound” exhibition plays in achieving this objective. “Although one hundred and one years have passed since the Armenian Genocide, we will continue to commemorate because we are inheritors of the history that has made us who we are today” stated Prelate Mardirossian. “We commend the hard work and diligence of all those involved in the realization of this beautiful tribute to our rich history and heritage, and for their initiative in making the story of the Armenian people available to the general public.”

Mayor Paula Devine thanked the organizers for bringing the exhibition to the City of Glendale in light of its international debut and reaffirmed her support for the development of the Armenian American Museum. “We are a very proud and diverse community and we are excited to be a part of an exhibition that educates and advocates for awareness of the Armenian culture” stated Devine. Director of the City of Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Department, also recognized the dedication and commitment of the Brand Library staff who played an integral role in the exhibition project.

Opening Ceremony crowd

Opening Ceremony crowd

The “Armenia: An Open Wound” exhibition was inaugurated in Mexico City at the Museo Memoria y Tolerancia [Museum of Memory & Tolerance] during the Armenian Genocide centenary. Exhibition curator and spokesperson on behalf of the museum, Sonia Arakelian, passionately reflected on her personal family story which inspired her to produce an exhibition which educates, commemorates, and calls for justice.

“This exhibition combines diverse sources such as original documents, survivor testimonies, artifacts, and private collections in order raise awareness about the Armenian Genocide, commemorate the lives of victims, and continue to mobilize until the promise of ‘Never Again’ becomes a global reality,” stated Arakelian. “The Museo Memoria y Tolerancia thanks the partnership of the City of Glendale and Armenian American Museum for bringing this exhibition to the forefront of your community.”

The City of Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Department partnered with the Armenian American Museum to present “Armenia: An Open Wound,” an exhibition curated by the Museo Memoria y Tolerancia [Museum of Memory and Tolerance] in Mexico City. The exhibit will be on view at the Brand Library & Art Center until June 11, 2016 during the library’s regular hours: Tuesday and Thursday 12-8pm, Wednesday 12-6pm, and Friday and Saturday, 10am-5pm. Brand Library & Art Center is located at 1601 West Mountain Street, Glendale, California, 91201.

A diverse slate of complimentary programs will be held on a weekly basis. All events are free and open to the public.

Visit the museum website or call the Brand Library at (818) 548-2051 for the complete schedule of upcoming programs.

The Armenian American Museum is a developing project in Glendale, CA, with a mission to promote understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Armenian American experience. When completed, it will serve as a cultural campus that enriches the community, educates the public on the Armenian American story, and empowers individuals to embrace cultural diversity and speak out against prejudice.

The governing board of the Armenian American Museum consists of representatives from the following nine regional Armenian American institutions and organizations: Armenian Catholic Eparchy, Armenian Cultural Foundation, Armenian Evangelical Union of North America, Armenian General Benevolent Union – Western District, Armenian Relief Society – Western USA, Nor Or Charitable Foundation, Nor Serount Cultural Association, Western Diocese of the Armenian Church of North America, and Western Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church.

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