[M]odern art embodies and manifests all the worst features of modern thought — the despair, the irrationality, the hostility to tradition, the confusion of scientia with techne, or wisdom with power, the misunderstanding of freedom as liberation from essence rather than perfection of essence. In short, artistic modernism is the nihilism of our epoch made incarnate. The modern world did give us a vastly improved understanding of our environment coupled with enormous power over it. We became drunk with that power and abused it abominably, yet modern science increasingly reveals the superiority of evolved solutions for furthering human civilization in a healthy and sustainable manner, compared to arbitrary artistic whims. We have equated this power with the modernist agenda, and, terrified of losing our dominance over nature, continue to subjugate creative endeavor to ideology.
This is not about aesthetics but civilization itself. We are watching the increasingly rapid dissolution of civil society on all sides of us — the failure of our schools, a breakdown of the family, the degradation of language, the abandonment of polite manners, the rape of the environment, and the replacement of a stable economy with a torrent of dangerous speculation. We do not give sufficient consideration to how far the depravity of contemporary art may be implicated in this catastrophic decline. Nothing is so important to the spiritual and mental flourishing of a people as its art. The stories they tell, the buildings they inhabit, the public spaces in which they gather, the songs they sing, the fashioned images they gaze upon — these things shape their souls more permanently and effectively than anything else. We live in a time when the art all around us accustoms men to, and insinuates into their souls, the most erroneous and degrading ideas imaginable about themselves and their world. A humane society can hardly be expected to grow out of such an adverse cultural environment.
—The Tyranny of Artistic Modernism by Mark Anthony Signorelli & Nikos A. Salingaro (via zerogate)