AIDS Memorial Quilt blocks to be displayed at Fort Wayne Museum of Art in commemoration of World Aids Day

In this 2012 photo, two people work on adding a panel to The NAMES Project Memorial Quilt in memory of a person who died from AIDS during the quilt's display on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

To mark World AIDS Day on Friday, six quilt blocks from The NAMES Project Foundation’s AIDS Memorial Quilt will be displayed Saturday through Dec. 7 at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art, 311 E. Main St.

Most quilt blocks, which are 12 feet long and 12 feet wide, contain eight separate panels, with each panel remembering the life of a person who died from AIDS.

Admission is free to see the quilt only, but visitors will need to pay regular admission to see other museum exhibits.

Art museum hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, except open until 8 p.m. on Thursdays; noon-5 p.m. Sundays; and closed Mondays.

The idea for the AIDS Memorial Quilt was proposed in 1985 by AIDS activist Cleve Jones as a memorial to celebrate the lives of people who have died because of AIDS, said a news release from Positive Resource Connection in Fort Wayne, which works to prevent HIV and AIDS and assists clients living with the diseases.

Each of the eight panels in a quilt block are 3 feet by 6 feet — the approximate size of a gravesite — to connect the idea of AIDS and death more directly, the news release said.

The AIDS Memorial Quilt currently contains more than 49,000 panels on 5,981 blocks, a NAMES Project Foundation staff member said via email.

The quilt still is maintained and displayed by The NAMES Project Foundation, the news release said. The foundation hopes the quilt creates awareness about the massive scope of the AIDS pandemic and also provides support and healing to people affected by it.