The frenzied passion for art is a cancer that eats up everything else; and, as the out-and-out absence of what is proper and true in art is tantamount to the absence of art, the man fades away completely; excessive specialization of a faculty ends in nothing. . . . The folly of art is on a par with the abuse of the mind. The creation of one or the other of these two supremacies begets stupidity, hardness of heart, and unbounded pride and egotism.
—Baudelaire, L’Art romantique
There are indeed many things that are classified as “backward” that might be the starting-point of real inner progress.
—Hans Sedlmayr, Art in Crisis
Among the many peculiarities affecting our cultural life today, perhaps none is more peculiar, or more fateful for the practice and enjoyment of art, than the fact that virtually anything can be put forward...