There is a lot of truth to the scale argument. I remember seeing some prints of work by Imogene Cunningham (I hope that“s how it“s spelled) and they were from a Rollei neg, printed small within 10x8 paper, if memory serves - this was in a Glasgow gallery about three decades ago - and the abiding sense from then is indeed of a small picture looking just right.
Equipment to hand plays a rōle in this too: I have an A3+ printer and now anything I do goes on that; earlier, I used an A4 printer and things looked okay there too. That means, to me at least, that conditioning plays a hell of a big part in all of this. Conditioning and also money. What did the previous generation use before their work took off later on and they had printers do their work for them, at gallery requested sizes, I imagine? I am fairly sure that galleries are really and seriously cynical enough to look at photographic art as art by the square foot, priced accordingly. There are obviously exceptions where work exists in no alternative size than a smaller print, but I get the feeling that the motto is the bigger the better.
That might be a good idea in some cases, but have you seen over-enlarged pictures of women? From the humble fashion shop point-of-sales display to the huge nudes that appear in some shows, too big is overpowering and that is counter-productive; frightening, even.