Elena López Riera

Those Who Desire

Mar 31–May 27, 2019


Elena López Riera. Los que desean (Those Who Desire). 2018. Digital video, 24 min. Image courtesy of Elena López Riera
  • MoMA PS1, Second floor

The films of Elena López Riera intermingle observational documentary, essayistic work, and filmic portraiture. The artist’s poetic representations of individuals and settings are highly specific to her native coastal Southern Spain, yet also serve as microcosms that represent social and cultural phenomena resonating the world over.

Los que desean (Those Who Desire) (2018) chronicles the colombicultura of Valencia, an exclusively male subculture devoted to raising and training homing pigeons, or palomas, for competition. The film depicts a paloma race in the artist’s hometown, for which the trainers brightly paint and decorate their birds. The winner of this special competition is not the fastest bird, but the male pigeon who is able to chase and “conquer” a single female bird. The artist’s film is a portrait not just of the animal world, but also of the men who train these birds, exploring the cultural mores and codes of masculinity that structure the colombicultura and also the community at large. Those Who Desire dissects notions of identity, sexuality, and the social project of collectively constructing and fostering contemporary gender identities.


Organized by Jocelyn Miller, Assistant Curator, MoMA PS1.

  • This exhibition is part of Spring 2019.
  • The exhibition is made possible by the MoMA PS1 Annual Exhibition Fund.


    If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

    MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit https://www.moma.org/research/circulating-film.

    If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].


    This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].