definition, and “a round ball” is thereforenredundant — as is the poet’snstrange need to anticipate a situationnin which the cartographer, ready to getndown to some serious mapmaking,nsuddenly discovers he has no suppliesnor tools. Besides, why “quickly”?nAnyway, the professors thought Inwas criticizing Donne. Indeed, wasn’tn”redundant” a bad word in the creativenwriting courses they had taken in theirnday, along with “rambling”? Yet geniusnalways rambles—on and on, perpetuallynmissing the point, effervescentlynredundant. That’s what Inwanted to say about John Donne.nArmy, and she spent time drawingnmaps for the Royal Air Force duringnthe war.nShe was born and raised on hernfather’s country estate in Cregg, CountynCork, Ireland. A child prodigy at thenage of 12, she began classes in drawingnat an art school in Surrey and subsequendynwon a scholarship to the SladenSchool of Art in London, where shenreceived her formal training. After anstint with the J. Arthur Rank Corporationnas a set designer for a series ofnRank films. Miss Browning had hernfirst personal exhibition at the LittlenGallerv in London in 1949. That samenHope Garden by Colleen Browning; oil on canvas-;38″x54V2″; Kennedy Galleries.n501 CHRONICLESnThat’s what I want to say now aboutnColleen Browning, whom I met thisnspring at the suggestion of this magazine’sneditor a few weeks before “OthernWorlds,” her new show, opened atnKennedy Galleries in New York. I amnreasonably certain that Miss Browningnwill appreciate my earlier, seeminglynroundabout introduction: Her fathernwas a major general in the Britishnyear, she emigrated to the UnitednStates, settiing in New York City. “Actually,”nshe points out, “it was Harlem.nBut since I didn’t know it, I didn’tnworry.”nThe paintings still faced the walls,nwaiting to be hung—the John Marinnexhibit had to be taken down first—asnKennedy’s Ken Quail was turningnthem around for Miss Browning andnnnme one by one. The Russian proverbnwas going through my mind. Therenwas nothing simple about these.nArabesque, a painting in the show,nis representative of one Browningntheme, prominent in her last show atnKennedy in 1982 [Fruit Market, Lily,nPoinciana Pulcherrima, Under thenFlamboyant, Danae, Metamorphoses,nNight, all dating from 1980-81, werenincluded). The theme is symbiosis.nThe atmosphere makes one think ofnGauguin, but somehow chastened:nwomen in bathing suits and resortnegetation blend, limb’on limb, withneach other in a tangle of light andnshadow. Browning’s color is whatnmakes this possible, as she glamorizesnnature across the board, making colornthe common denominator of the animatenand the inanimate (in the case ofnsome paintings, such as the 1980 FruitnMarket, the edible and the inedible).nHer painting is so complex it makesnone suspect the Old Masters of cuttingncorners; compared with her Hope Gardenn(in the new show), the BoschnGardens of Delight seems Puritanical,na Protestant’s notion of decadence, likenoatmeal with fresh fruit.nThe tropical complexities of HopenGarden cannot be explained by itsnphysical location in Grenada, wherenBrowning lives with her husband ofnnearly 40 years, the writer GeoffreynWagner. An earlier theme of hers,ngraffiti-covered New York City subwa’ntrains, expressed in paintings with tidesnlike Clyde’s Car (1976) or Sly’s Eyen(1977), provided her with whatever shenneeded to portray the urban landscapen(or rather, undergroundscape) with thensame unerring passion for the redundant.n”Catching the IRT full-stop,”nran the New York Post’s snappy, if anlittie incomprehensible, headline beforenthat show; the Post reporter madenMiss Browning admit that subwayngraffiti was vandalism, “but I would bendishonest”—she held her ground—“ifnI didn’t think it interesting. I don’tnthink art should be moralistic, showingnhow the world should be. Becausenthen you get all these Chinese postersnof happy workers on tractors. Bad artnand poor morality.”nWhatever subject matter she chooses,nas with all creative artists, it merelynserves as a plot for her true subject, thenweaving of natural forms into the fabricnof color. The growth of the plotn