Posted on December 26, 2022 at 4:00 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Writer Joan Didion proudly displayed a portrait of herself, for years, and never knew the artist's name.

All she (and her circle) knew was that "L. Johnson" had painted it in 1977, copying a photo of Didion that appeared in one of her books.

And when her estate was auctioned off, the painting absolutely captivated bidders — it sold for $110,000, even without further information on L. Johnson's identity.

Finally, a year after Didion's death, the mystery has been solved.

Head to the New York Times to meet the enigmatic L. Johnson, who, unfortunately, died without ever knowing how much the world loved his portrait of Didion.

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Categories: Today in Books

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