He was born and died in Verona. He was a pupil of Santo Prunato and Antonio Balestra and active mostly in the area of the Veneto. He became the director of the academy of painting and sculpture of Verona in December of 1764.
For the Austrian governor of Lombardy and a collector of antiquities, Count Firmian, Cignaroli painted two canvases on Greco-Roman episodes, a thematic preferred by Neoclassic painters: Death of Cato (1759) and Death of Socrates. The postures and grouping though could be easily mistaken for the death of saint.