Born in Bologna he was son of the Mannerist painter Ercole Procaccini the Elder and brother of Camillo Procaccini and Carlo Antonio Procaccini. The family moved to Milan around 1585 with the help of the rich art collector Pirro Visconti.
Among his many altarpieces are the Circumcision (c.1616) now in Galleria Estense, Modena, and the Last Supper (1616) for Convent associated with the Basilica della Santissima Annunziata del Vastato in Genoa. He also painted the Scourging of Christ.
He worked with Giovanni Battista Crespi (il Cerano) and Pier Francesco Mazzucchelli (il Morazzone) following the directions of Cardinal Federico Borromeo, patron of the arts and cousin of Charles Borromeo. He also painted small religious canvases for rich families, in Milan and in Genoa, where he saw the works of Rubens.
His style shows the influence of Bolognese mannerism and Venetian colorism and marks the beginning of the Baroque.
Ecce Homo, 1615–1620, Dallas Museum of Art
- Coronation of the Virgin 
- Virgin with Saints Francis and Dominic; institution of the Rosary 
- Ecce Homo, 1615–1620, today at the Dallas Museum of Art [permanent dead link]
- Wittkower, Rudolf (1993). "Art and Architecture Italy, 1600–1750". Pelican History of Art. 1980. Penguin Books Ltd. pp. 98–102.
- Procaccini exhibition.
- Domenico Sedini, Giulio Cesare Procaccini, online catalogue Artgate by Fondazione Cariplo, 2010, CC BY-SA.
Media related to Giulio Cesare Procaccini at Wikimedia Commons