Block 5603 of the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt is a simpler designed set of panels that memorializes different people who all have some sort of connection to music. Each panel is about 3-by-6 feet and they are all sewn together to create an even bigger panel to make a story about the ones who have lost their lives.
For this particular panel that I have chosen, it was that of Freddie Mercury who was considered to be one of the greatest singers off all time. However, due to the time of his death and the cause of it, there was a lot of stigma behind it due to the fact that AIDS was seen as something only homosexuals received, something that Freddie Mercury had openly admitted about himself. Even so, he is still considered a well liked artist among many people, whether they were part of this stigma or against it.
The panel’s base is of a gold fabric that gave it a nice shine when reflected perfectly in the sunlight. Running your fingers across it, you could feel the soft material beneath your fingertips. The colors contrasted against the bright gold color base were made of a black fabric, embroidered to spell of his name. With his first name “Freddie” stitched towards the left corner in bold, black letters, just underneath the “e” was a vinyl record that was perfectly stitched to represent the music he created. Just underneath the vinyl record was his last name “Mercury” resting towards the right bottom corner, also stitched as bold and black. Towards the top right corner of the panel, two music notes are stitched with the words “Queen” stitched just below it in a slanted position. This is an homage to his time in the band he created with his fellow bandmates that took the world by storm as the band known as Queen. The last thing on the panel are the numbers, which are stitched in the colors red and blue, just below his first name. These numbers represent a starting date, which is 1984, and an end date, 1991. The end date is the year of his death but, the starting date isn’t his birth year. However, this date is to represent the year when the talk of Freddie Mercury’s sexuality came into light which would lead to the talk about his case with AIDS. During the time of him discovering his sexuality and the illness, many people had associated homosexuality with AIDS, leading many people to believe that only gay people could die of AIDS.