Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's 42nd-minute goal gave Wenger some hope after a woeful first-half performance, but his players were unable to find an equaliser and avoid a fourth straight away defeat in the Premier League.
The former Manchester United and England centre-back, who was once the most expensive defender in the world, drew parallels with the end of his own career, which petered out in disappointing fashion at QPR.
Arsenal went into the contest on the back of damaging defeats to Manchester City in both the Carabao Cup final and the Premier League, as well as losing the home leg of their Europa League tie with Ostersund.
While Arsenal are low on self-belief, Brighton are flying as they remain unbeaten in all competitions since January 20, have two players up for the Premier League player of the month award and, in Chris Hughton, a boss nominated for the manager's accolade.
Calls for the Gunners manager to take his final bow at the Emirates and leave after 22 long years of service have hit boiling point, with Arsenal fans dispirited by the lack of cohesion and commitment their team have shown under the Frenchman.
Honolulu's Michelle Wie victorious with incredible finish in Singapore
So she (Wie) dropped the bomb on the last. "The nerves that I got on 18, I think any human being would experience it", she said. Wie's approach shot on 18 came up a little short, leaving her with a 35-foot putt from the fringe for birdie.
Brighton raced to a two-goal lead in the opening 27 minutes through Lewis Dunk and Glen Murray.
Arsenal began the match on the front foot but found themselves behind seven minutes in, with Dunk sweeping the ball into the net from 12 yards out after Shane Duffy had beaten Petr Cech to a corner. With 26 minutes gone, they gifted the home side their second goal. "We are going through a tough time".
Koscielny's wayward pass was sent out wide to Gross, and his curling cross from the right was headed down and beneath the body of Cech by Murray. Arsenal kept the pressure on and almost equalized as the half came to a close, but Laurent Koscielny's header hit the post and ricocheted away, and the Gunners went into the break trailing by a goal.
"It is very hard, almost impossible now - we are too far behind", Wenger said of Arsenal's top-four prospects.
Ozil had been quiet in the first half but a powerful run and shot brought a fine save from Mat Ryan before the German's threaded pass nearly let in Aubameyang for his second goal.