A few years back, Arthur Smith – known to all as DJ don Artwork – casually decided to install a soundsystem and lasers in a random Rinse FM listener’s living room. It was the start of something small and big at the same time. Having been an unsung hero of British dance for years (from the ’90s garage scene to owning dubstep with Benga and Skream as part of Magnetic Man), this small-yet-epic party has made the DJ a star for the first time.
That unabashed, non-chin-strokey party vibe became the template for Art’s House: his nomadic club strand that’s grown via venues like The Nest and Dalston Roof Park into a raging UK-wide success. As well as hosting his very own festival in August, Artwork is about to embark on a 13-week residency at XOYO, so we had a chat with the king of unbridled fun to find out exactly what he thinks makes the perfect party. He made us do it at his gaff in Peckham, where he’s had a sweet new bar installed. ‘Fifty fucking quid! Can you believe it? It’s the best thing I’ve ever seen. Having a bar in the house can be a bit of a problem, though…’