Berta Taracena (born 1925) is a Mexican historian, cultural researcher and art critic.
Taracena was born in Mexico City in 1925, to a family which was interested in culture. Her father was a Mexican senator and friend of Carlos Chávez, the director of the Palacio de Bellas Artes. This allowed her to earn a quality education, receiving a bachelor's and master's degree in Mexican history from the Universidad Nacional de México. Her master's thesis was done on the work of Jesús Reyes Ferreira, whom she knew personally. She also studied and worked under academics such as Francisco de la Maza and Justino Fernández.
She began her writing career young,[when?] publishing about two articles a week, generally reviewing current trends in art, along with art news. She also began doing research work, writing and editing books, along with museum curating. She has worked with other notables in Mexico’s art world such as Fernando Gamboa. Her specialty is Mexican visual art, having written hundreds of essays, articles and books as well as appearing at conferences. She focuses on the continuity of Mexican art from its pre-Hispanic roots to the present. She has published notable books on artists such as Diego Rivera, Manuel Rodríguez Lozano, Vladimir Cora, Leopoldo Flores and Antonio Ramírez, as well as Estética del arte mexicano en el tiempo in 2006.
She has stated that Mexican art “constitutes a singular and unique phenomenon, owing to a mixture of traces and elements that bring together an idea of an original cohesion, created by the qualities of monument, and rich imagination. Form, line, color, fantasy and meaning are woven to define an idea of art with particular traits.”
In 2009, the Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México held a tribute to her life's work.
- "Rendirá la UAEM homenaje a Berta Taracena, crítica de arte" (in Spanish). Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México. June 22, 2009. Retrieved November 24, 2013.
- Lily Kassner (2009). "Berta Taracena" (in Spanish). Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México. Retrieved November 24, 2013.
- Martha Chapa (July 30, 2006). "La manzana flechada" (in Spanish). El Universal. Retrieved November 24, 2013.