Brignoni was born in Chiasso in 1903 but moved to Bern with his parents in 1907. He first studied art with Victor Surbek, then continued his studies at the Academy of Arts, Berlin. In 1923 he went to study in Paris at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, where he met Alberto Giacometti, Picasso, and other avant-gardists, and where he was first exposed to African art.He began collecting these artworks in 1926 and expanded the scope of his collecting to Melanesian and Indonesian art; he also supported himself in part through sales of these works.During this period he was also active in his own works, which were Surrealist and Primitivist in character. He joined Gruppe 33, an anti-Fascist association of artists based in Basel, and was represented in the 1935 and 1936 Surrealist exhibits in Copenhagen. He married Chilean painter Graziella Aranis (1906-1996) in 1935.
His works were widely exhibited, including a 1997 retrospective show at the Kunstmuseum Bern. He died in that city in 2002, survived by his second wife Marlyse Haller.Wikipedia