As a young man Matthew Perceval set up a studio in London but left there in 1967 to paint in the south of France, first at Tourrettes-sur-Loup then in Canaules-et-Argentières and finally in Lézan where he stayed until moving to Paris in 1978. During this time he undertook numerous painting trips throughout Europe and North Africa, and mastered the art of pottery and glazing.In 1981 Matthew Perceval returned to Australia and settled with his family in Newcastle. He continued his tradition of painting en plein air and undertook many painting trips throughout Australia and to India.
In 2000, after his three children left the family home, Matthew Perceval returned to Paris with his wife and set up a second studio overlooking the city. In 2007 he settled back in Australia and shares his time between his Paris and Newcastle studios.Matthew Perceval exhibited for the very first time at the Karoly Foundation in Venice in 1968. Since then he has held over 30 solo exhibitions and has participated in many group shows including; Salon d'Autumne and Salon de Mai, Grand Palais, Paris, Australian Artists of Fame and Promise, NSW House, London, Shifting Ground exhibition, Art Gallery of NSW, Nobbys Collection, Newcastle Region Art Gallery, to name but a few. In 2007 a collection of Matthew Perceval's portrait paintings was exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra.
His work is represented in numerous public, corporate and private collections in Australia and abroad.