Anthony Zurcher / North America reporter
The desolate landscape is a study in shades of red. Fine dust covers the ground. In the distance, dark mountains rise on the horizon. Except for the pale sky, it could be a scene from the surface of Mars. Arthur Charchian stands in the middle of this barren wasteland and explains that, but for fate's mercy, his ancestors could have died here. Except "here" isn't the desert of Deir ez-Zor, in what is now eastern Syria, the place where hundreds thousands of Armenians perished while fleeing their ancestral homeland a century ago. Mr Charchian is in a room at the centre of a temporary exhibit on Armenian history at the Brand Museum in Glendale, California - a memorial to a bitter chapter in the history of a people.
The exhibit, which first opened in Mexico City, is called Armenia: An Open Wound. It traces the history of Armenian culture from what they consider their golden age in the 1st Century BC through the great diaspora - when the Armenian people scattered across the globe after being forced from their homes by the Ottoman Empire Turks during World War One.
They settled in nearby parts of the Middle East, in Europe, in New York and as far away as Glendale, a Los Angeles suburb nestled in the Verdugo Mountains, home to the largest Armenian population in the Western world.
There are currently more than 200,000 Armenians living in the greater Los Angeles metropolitan area, and the city of Glendale - with a population that is roughly 30% Armenian - is its beating heart.