San Lorenzo church was designed and built by Bartolino da Novara between 1375 and 1380. Restorations took place in 1840 and again in 1916.
The unfinished brick facade contains a central rose window and lateral ogival windows, flanked by buttresses that taper into roof spires. Two exterior 15th-century bas-reliefs are above the entry portal. In the pilaster strips are 19th-century copies of depictions of the Saints Albin, Amicus and Amelius found in a 15th-century polyptych by Paolo da Brescia, a work once in the local church St Albin and now conserved in the Sabauda Gallery of Turin.
Inside, in first span on the right there is an anonymous 15th-century fresco representing the Virgin and Child; in the second span, a Virgin between Saints Roch and Sebastian (1524) attributed to Gaudenzio Ferrari. The first chapel houses a panel depicting the Madonna of the Rosary (1578) by Bernardo Lanino; the same author painted a panel is crowned by tablets depicting the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary. The niche is completed by four canvases depicting the Archangel Gabriel and the Virgin of the Annunciation, Flight to Egypt, and Rest of the Holy Family by Giulio Cesare Procaccini, in addition to a canvas of Glory in Paradise attributed to Camillo Procaccini. In the second chapel, above the altar, is the large altarpiece depicting Crucifixion with Saints Ambrosius, Laurentius and Mary the Magdalen, (1610) by Giovanni Battista Crespi.
In the first chapel on the left is a 15th-century Christmas Nativity scene made in wood with about 80 low relief figures by Lorenzo da Mortara. Next to this is a San Carlo in prayer and St Anne with Virgin attributed to Pier Francesco Mazzucchelli.
The second chapel has a fifteenth-century polyptych on a six-parted table, by A. De Mulini.References:
The famous Italian Medici family have given two queens to France: Catherine, the spouse of Henry II, and Marie, widow of Henry IV, who built the current Luxembourg palace. Maria di Medici had never been happy at the Louvre, still semi-medieval, where the fickle king, did not hesitate to receive his mistresses. The death of Henry IV, assassinated in 1610, left the way open for Marie's project. When she became regent, she was able to give special attention to the construction of an imposing modern residence that would be reminiscent of the Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens in Florence, where she grew up. The development of the 25-hectare park, which was to serve as a jewel-case for the palace, began immediately.
The architect, Salomon de Brosse, began the work in 1615. Only 16 years later was the palace was completed. Palace of Luxembourg affords a transition between the Renaissance and the Classical period.
In 1750, the Director of the King's Buildings installed in the wing the first public art-gallery in France, in which French and foreign canvases of the royal collections are shown. The Count of Provence and future Louis XVIII, who was living in Petit Luxembourg, had this gallery closed in 1780: leaving to emigrate, he fled from the palace in June 1791.
During the French Revolution the palace was first abandoned and then moved as a national prison. After that it was the seat of the French Directory, and in 1799, the home of the Sénat conservateur and the first residence of Napoleon Bonaparte, as First Consul of the French Republic. The old apartments of Maria di Medici were altered. The floor, which the 80 senators only occupied in 1804, was built in the middle of the present Conference Hall.
Beginning in 1835 the architect Alphonse de Gisors added a new garden wing parallel to the old corps de logis, replicating the look of the original 17th-century facade so precisely that it is difficult to distinguish at first glance the old from the new. The new senate chamber was located in what would have been the courtyard area in-between.
The new wing included a library (bibliothèque) with a cycle of paintings (1845–1847) by Eugène Delacroix. In the 1850s, at the request of Emperor Napoleon III, Gisors created the highly decorated Salle des Conférences, which influenced the nature of subsequent official interiors of the Second Empire, including those of the Palais Garnier.
During the German occupation of Paris (1940–1944), Hermann Göring took over the palace as the headquarters of the Luftwaffe in France, taking for himself a sumptuous suite of rooms to accommodate his visits to the French capital. Since 1958 the Luxembourg palace has been the seat of the French Senate of the Fifth Republic.